More Than 750 Volunteers Prepare For Jazz Fest 2016

The event will have 28 food vendors and 2 music stages

In just one day the 2016 JazzFest will be underway.

The organizers say this year could be the biggest year in terms of attendance numbers.

So to get ready, hundreds of volunteers are out at Yankton Trail Park setting up the three-day music filled event.

“We’re putting all of our power in, getting all of the electricity that we need at JazzFest,” says Executive Director of the Sioux Falls Jazz and Blues Society.

The stages are almost set, but in the 25th year, there are some changes.

“We are doing some new things with bigger screens by the stage, allowing people to send some photos to be on the screen and some tweets,” explains Joyce, which is an element that might draw a younger crowd, especially during Friday’s headliner.

“I’ve been joking to some of my friends; this is the first time I’ve had some of my daughters text me and tell me they want to meet the Fray,” says Joyce. “Normally that doesn’t happen.”

Organizers say the final product aims to be amazing shows with record-breaking attendance.

But behind the scenes, the event is just like jazz itself, a bit of organized chaos.

“We have over 750 volunteers that help us down at the park itself,” says Joyce.

While the final touches are coming together Wednesday, the work started long before this week.

“It’s almost an all year event for us,” says Joyce. “But the best feeling is when you get up stage with all those folks with the headliner and you see all the hard work goes into letting these people enjoy some good music in a 3 day summer event.”

And while it’s called JazzFest, the event caters to many different music fans.

“We’re going to have some Zydeco Friday night, we’ve had reggae, we’ve had rock; we’ve had a lot of different styles,” says Joyce.

So while the park may look empty Wednesday, come Thursday and Friday, it will be a completely different scene.

“We’re not too small to have these great artists come,” adds Joyce.

Joyce suggests bringing a lawn chair or blanket, but is asking attendees to avoid bringing a cooler, umbrella or tent.

There will be a shuttle to the event each day.

Limited parking at Yankton Trail Park costs $10.

For more information on the JazzFest, visit their website at

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