NewWestFest starts off strong, despite severe weather delay

Alec Erickson

The annual three-day festival NewWestFest began Friday night in Old Town. But the festival really took off on Saturday when most of the scheduled acts performed.

Saturday began with performances by Jeff Jenkins’ The Organization, Dechen Hawk and LET THEM ROAR.


In additional to the music, booths were set up by local and non-local businesses on Mountain Avenue, providing attendees with everything from clothing to food.

One of the standout acts from Saturday was Tracksuit Wedding, whose vocals were strong enough to carry their music all the way through Old Town. Filled with fun and catchy vintage rock tracks, it was easy to see why so many people in the crowd were dancing along.

Later in the day came another standout Slow Caves, who in addition to playing their own concert at NewWestFest, also opening for Fort Collins’ own Tickle Me Pink on Saturday night. The band would go on to play for almost an hour, providing a great mix of classic punk songs and new wave punk music. They were loud and in your face the entire time, and the crowd visibly loved the show.

Not long after, the Fort Collins-based band Shatter Proof took to the stage. Linden Street was packed with fans and attendees alike who were all singing and clapping along with the classic alternative rock elements. Their set was filled with a wide variety of sounds including loud rock and slow and acoustic music.

Shortly after Shatter Proof’s set, a severe weather warning was announced. Attendees were asked to seek shelter indoors and the rest of the musical acts were delayed.

The storm eventually cleared up, and around 6 p.m., it announced that the rest of the performances would proceed as scheduled.

Finally, NewWestFest headliner The Fray began their performance on the Mountain Avenue stage late in the evening. Playing many of their most beloved songs, The Fray’s set landed well with the audience. There were fans who knew the words to every song and festival goers who were hearing The Fray’s music for the first time. But everyone alike enjoyed the concert and had high energy throughout the entire performance.

NewWestFest continues Sunday, August 14, with more music, food and Fort Collins fun.

Collegian Music Critic Alec Erickson can be reached at or on Twitter @CTV_ACE.