Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest promises to light up Old Town

From August 11 to 13, Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest is coming to Fort Collins. Known locally as BoNi, the free music festival takes place in Old Town and features a massive lineup of 86 bands in 2017. The event is a joint creation of the Downtown Business Association and the Bohemian Foundation. It contains more than 250 food and art booths, and is put together by over 650 volunteers.

The`90s alternative rock band CAKE is one of the festival’s three headliners, and is scheduled to appear August 12 from 8:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on the Mountain Avenue Stage. Known for decades-spanning hit songs like “Going the Distance,” “Short Skirt/Long Jacket” and “No Phone,” CAKE’s performance will be simultaneously projected at Library Park Stage and the northwest corner of Library Park.


While the remaining two headliners have not been announced yet, the festival is packed with local music crossing multiple genres. BoNi enters its 13th year with folk bands Gypsy Moon, The Holler and Pandas & People taking the Mountain Avenue stage on opening night. TIERRO with Bridget Law and The Two Tracks, a world music and Americana band respectively, play opening night at the Library Park Stage. Cracker, another `90s alternative rock group known for their single “Low,” shares the Library Park Stage.

The last two days of the festival break into six different stages. Among the multitudes of artists converging on Old Town are Flobots, a Denver hip-hop group who rose to fame with the single “Handlebars.”

Attendees looking to get involved in BoNi can apply to a wide range of volunteer roles. Volunteers can still sign up at any time before the festival ends, but some roles require a background check first. Jobs ranging from greeting the incoming bands to catering, volunteering can offer an inside look into what goes on behind the scenes of a major music festival. Sign-up can be found on at

The MAX bus will continue to run on Saturday Aug. 12 and Sunday Aug. 13, so there is no excuse not to come out for Fort Collins’ biggest, admissions-free summer music event. Just remember to leave the selfie sticks at home.