MILWAUKEE (CelebrityAccess) — Milwaukee’s Summerfest has wrapped for 2018 and festival organizers on Friday reported that more than 766,192 people attended the festival over its 11 days.
“In 2018, Summerfest delivered on its promise to offer one of the most diverse line-ups in the industry which appealed to our entire community. I want to thank our fans, sponsors, volunteers, Milwaukee Police Department, Milwaukee County Transit System, vendors and staff who persevered through five challenging weather days. Despite the rain and heat, our organization provided 11 great days of music, food, and fun and contributed significantly to our local economy,” said Don Smiley, President, and CEO of Milwaukee World Festival, Inc.
The lineup for 2018 featured several first-time performers, including the Weeknd, Janelle Monáe, Kesha, and Marshmello, as well as some returning fan favorites, including Imagine Dragons, James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, Phil Vassar, Nelly, Greta Van Fleet, and others.
However, despite the upbeat message from organizers, attendance at the festival this year was at record lows for the past two decades. According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, attendance at the festival was down by 8% from last year, when 831,769 fans attended the festival for its 50th anniversary, and at the lowest level since 1993.
Summerfest organizers noted that weather was a factor for 2018, with three days of excessive heat, with temperatures soaring to over 100 degrees and another two days where the festival was beset by rain.
As the Journal-Sentinel reported, the slowdown for festival ticket sales affected more than just Summerfest this year. In 2017, Chicago’s Lollapalooza sold out in just over two hours, while this year, it took eight days for the festival to be sold out.
Other events in the region, including Summer Set and Country on the River have been canceled outright, while the Country USA in Oshkosh cut back from five days to just three.