For the tenth consecutive year, the members of the Matlacha Mariners are presenting the Southwest Florida Blues Festival attracting music enthusiasts from far and wide. Beginning as just a small gathering of local musicians, the event has grown in leaps and bounds. So much so, the Mariners have deemed it necessary to seek out a larger venue and have opted to move the event to the German-American Club on Pine Island Road in Cape Coral.
"In order for us to fulfill the demands of growing crowds and to continue to attract national acts, we found we had no choice but to move the festival to a larger facility," said Mariner president Wayne Reed. "Even though we have moved the event off-island, this is still very much a Pine Island event. Most of the vendors participating at the event are from the island and all of the proceeds from this event will go directly back to the island in the form of donations to the elementary school music program, island youth groups, senior citizen support networks and other island charities."
This year's festival will take place on Saturday, Nov. 21 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and will feature acts from Mississippi to Detroit as well as Pine Island.
Photo Special to the Breeze
Motor City Josh will be among the headliners for this year’s Southwest Florida Blues Festival.
Among those headlining the show will be the group Motor City Josh and the Big 3.
Nationally known touring artists, Moreland and Arbuckle are also slated to perform at this year's festival. The recipients of dozens of accolades, "Guitar Edge" magazine named guitarist Aaron Moreland as one of today's 10 blues legends in the making and in "Blues Review" magazine it was written that Moreland and Arbuckle were Grade-A Mississippi blues musicians.
Robin Rogers has played in numerous venues taking her from Michigan to Georgia. She also was nominated for the prestigious Best Female Blues Artist in 2009 and in 2007 her song, "Colorblind Angel" took second place in the International Song writer's Competition.
What: 10th Annual Southwest Florida Blues Festival
When: Saturday, Nov. 21 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: German-American Club, Cape Coral
Who: Sponsored by the Matlacha Mariners
Why: To raise funds for PIE music program and other island charities
Recently nominated for a Grammy, Shane Dwight is said to be a hard-charging blues rocker and has been compared to the style of George Thorogood. Larry Grisham and his new band, the Beat Daddys also have a total of seven Grammy nominations.
All three groups will be performing a the festival as will Pine Island hometown legends, Deb and the Dynamics.
Admission to the Blues Festival will be $15 at the gate or $10 in advance. Children 11 and under will be admitted free with a paid adult. Local ticket outlets for advanced tickets are Bert's Bar and Grill, Traders Hitching Post and Pine Bay Gallery in Matlacha, Froggy's in St. James City, Pine island Printing Co. in Bokeelia, the Pine Island Chamber of Commerce Welcome Center, First Note Music, and Rainbow Records in Cape Coral and Scissorhands Salon and Barber Shop in Fort Myers. Tickets also are available on line by going to SouthwestFloridaBluesFestival.com or MatlachaMarines.org
In addition to hours of great music, the festival also will offer food, beverages and art and craft vendors. Ample parking is available at the German-American Club located at 2101 SW Pine Island Road in Cape Coral and lawn chairs or blankets are encouraged, however, coolers, outside beverages and pets will not be permitted.