First City Festival returns for its second year

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Returning for its second year, First City Festival has grown exponentially since its inception in 2013, and now boasts a lineup with huge headliners like Beck and The National to perform at the Monterey Fair and Event Center, and will be featuring a free carnival right next door.

Set in the heart of the gorgeous bayside city of Monterey, CA, with a backdrop that includes the beauty of Pebble Beach and Fisherman’s Wharf, the two-day festival on Aug. 23-24 is already on track to exceed the expectations of last year’s performances.

The rock-folk hero himself Beck will be taking the stage, along with New York based post-punk quintet, The National–but even more impressive are the names who share the lineup with them. Rising stars Phantogram, with their infectious, psychedelic shoe-gaze pop; indie giants The Naked and Famous; and California’s own beach rockers, Best Coast; will all be taking the stage on that last weekend in August.

The festival itself will feature over thirty bands to choose from, performing on three extremely intimate live music stages, in addition to a Vaudeville variety stage, which will feature three acts throughout the weekend: Puddles Pity Party, John Brothers Piano Company, Vau De Vire Society.

Between sets, guests can make full use of the free carnival, complete with an array of unlimited rides and games, as well as local craft beers, wine, and food. Visit the unique USA Marketplace, where designers of furniture, art, fashion and more, will be selling their handcrafted and American made goods. For music collectors, check out the Beat Swap Meet and scavenge through vinyl record collections for those rare pieces of gold.

Stay close to the action with the option of off-site camping, as well as numerous hotels and hostels designed to keep you near the music. Join Monterey in celebrating its colorful and proud history as California’s most beloved vacation destination, and enjoy nearby attractions as the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Fisherman’s Wharf before or after the festival. Enjoy the beauty of fresh ocean air and weather, at one of the few summer music festivals that are free of the heat and hassle you might experience elsewhere.

The Monterey Fair and Event Center has always been a center for music and the arts–in 1967, the Monterey Pop Festival, a three-day concert held in June at the Fairgrounds, was credited with beginning the famous “Summer of Love” that paved the way for future, wider-scale music festivals. It’s remembered for the first major American appearances by Jimi Hendrix, The Who, and Janis Joplin.

Named after Monterey’s claim as the official “first capital” of California, First City Festival attracted more than 20,000 attendees last year in its inaugural debut, stunning crowds with over thirty bands and including performances by Passion Pit, MGMT, and Modest Mouse.

The First City Music Festival will be held between August 24-25. Tickets are available and include free admission to the carnival: two-day admission is $159.50/$289.50 for general admission and VIP respectively; single day admission for either Saturday or Sunday is $79.75. Hotel and shuttle packages are available, as well as shuttle passes. Off-site camping is still an option.

For more information on transportation, lodging, and any other questions you might have, visit the FAQ page at the First City Festival website: http://www.firstcityfestival.com/