40 groups, multiple stages at first annual Blackstock Music Fest - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

40 groups, multiple stages at first annual Blackstock Music Festival

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BLACKSTOCK, SC (WIS) - It's something this farm land 40 miles north of Columbia has never seen before.

Thousands of music fans coming from all over the country to hear cutting edge bands and maybe start a new springtime tradition. Welcome to the Blackstock Music Festival.

Over 40 groups, multiple stages in a little less than two days.

It's being held on property owned by Josh Leonhardt's family. He's the festival's founder.

"This is family property that we've owned for over 14 years," Leonhardt said. "And we've done many different things with it. It's a wildlife preserve by nature. But now we're going to try and see if we can throw a music festival here and the animals here have given us their permission to come in and have a good time."

What kind of music?

Leonhardt said everything from country to electronic with most of the bands from the Carolinas.

 "We're appealing to Carolinians," Leonhardt said.  "We wanted to put on a Carolina festival with Carolina music."

But some of the fans have come from well outside the region.

Peter Weber and Emily Koehler drove down from Lansing, Michigan.

"I think it took us like 18 hours with a stop for bad weather," Koehler said. "We took a little pit stop in North Carolina."

Weber said he feels the talent definitely is going to bring a fair amount of people to South Carolina.

The bands aren't the only attraction at Blackstock.

Festival-goers can also buy some pretty unusual stuff like talismans made from pine cones.

And Alex Gallagher and his group will be spinning things they set on fire.

"You see somebody that's doing it, you say hey man that looks really cool, I'd like to learn," Gallagher said. "And hopefully they'll teach you."

Admission is not exactly cheap. It's $125 at the gate, though camping is free.

Leonhardt said a crowd of at least 3,000 would be a success for Blackstock's first year.

The music gets underway Friday at 7 p.m. and if all goes well, may not end until Sunday morning.

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