Today, LOCKN’ Festival announced their “Super VIP” lineup and, as usual, it’s pretty damn exciting. The Super VIP sets are extremely intimate, exclusive performances held during the festival that are open only to those with Super VIP passes (which also get you access to special viewing areas for Main Stage shows, a separate campground, air-conditioned bathrooms and showers, catered meals, and more). LOCKN’s Super VIP program offers a fortunate few the opportunity for once-in-a-lifetime experiences–the chance to see huge artists up-close-and-personal, on a small stage, in a small crowd, tucked away alongside tens of thousands of GA attendees.The announcement press release describes the LOCKN’ Super VIP sets as “a culmination of creativity, inspiration, and imaginative collaboration.” This is no exaggeration. On Friday, August 25th, Keller Williams & Friends will play the Super VIP stage. Sunday will see Jorma Kaukonen play a solo performance, and Friday and Saturday late-night, Super VIPs will be able to enjoy dance parties with DJ Logic. But the clear highlight of the LOCKN’ Super VIP schedule is “A Very Special Hour w/ Phil Lesh & Bob Weir on Saturday, August 26th.The two founding Grateful Dead members will also be performing an exciting set for the main festival crowd with the Terrapin Family Band (a one-time tribute to the Dead’s seminal 1977 album Terrapin Station), so the LOCKN’ masses will surely get their fair share of Phil and Bobby. And, of course, LOCKN’ is one of the year’s biggest festivals for a reason: With a ridiculous schedule of some of the best artists in the scene (that Thursday String Cheese > Umphrey’s > String Cheese > Umphrey’s > Biscuits lineup is almost too good to be true) and a host of other exciting artists and collaborations on the docket (Gov’t Mule, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Widespread Panic, John Butler Trio, Greensky Bluegrass, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, moe., The Marcus King Band, etc.), nobody is getting shorted on incredible music at this event. It’s a slam dunk.But the fact remains that on LOCKN’ Saturday, Phil Lesh & Bob Weir will play together on a piece of land that’s simultaneously occupied with thousands upon thousands of people who gladly would travel halfway across the world–let alone hike across Infinity Downs Farm–to see these two guys play together, and that majority won’t see the performance. It’s a topic on which people tend to have strong and differing opinions.That’s an inherent part of the increasingly prevalent market for high-end, super VIP, exclusive perks at music festivals. To provide an incredible, singular experience for some you have to, by definition, exclude the many. And that makes sense. Exclusive access is a marketable commodity. We’ve started to see it everywhere to varying degrees, and a few new events have even popped up that cater exclusively to the exclusive crowd charging outrageous sums to “party like rock stars.”They’ve been decidedly hit-or-miss. Last year’s inaugural Desert Trip capitalized successfully on the high-end live music market, selling tickets that ranged from roughly $450 – upwards of $1700 for 3-day tickets. Fans shelled out, and the event was a success, because the event lived up to the high-end experience it offered, with a ridiculous lineup of a generation’s greatest artists, amenities, and curated experiences that matched the ticket prices.But we’ve also seen the pay-to-play model backfire in disastrous fashion. Last weekend’s royally botched Fyre Festival sold extravagantly priced tickets to a purportedly extravagant event, but when attendees arrived at the event’s island locale they were met with no accommodations, lack of water and sewage systems, partially built infrastructure, feral dogs, and other general chaos. All flights to and from the island were cancelled. The event was cancelled before it started, and the organizers had been promptly hit with a $100M class action suit by Monday morning.Whether or not you like it, we live in a free economy, and any business in any industry in this country is driven by the golden rule: supply and demand. As long as the market for exclusive experiences exists, there will always be a vast majority that gets excluded–the proverbial “Phil-and-Bobby-are-playing-right-behind-that-fence-right-there-and-you’re-not-allowed-in,” if you will. And people will always have strong and differing opinions on the matter: “Pay-to-play” vs. “Equality for all.” Just watch…Whatever your thoughts on the high-end live music market, we’ll be in Arrington, VA from August 24th – 27th to join in one of the best parties of the summer. And if you’re heading to LOCKN’ but you’re not Super VIP–don’t fret, friend. We guarantee you’ll see more great music than you know what to do with that weekend. Enjoy it!For more information on LOCKN’, or to purchase tickets, head to the festival’s website. [Cover photo via Getty Images]
[NOTE: high-resolution photo from the Milk Toast is available at this link:]http://leahy.senate.gov/images/2008Events/052208MILCToast/052208MILCToas…(link is external)(photo by Senate Photographer)’Got MILC’ Across The Finish LineVermont Delegation Performs Traditional ‘Milk Toast’As Renewal Of The MILC Program’s Charter Finally Becomes LawSenate Joins House In OverridingPresident’s Veto Of The Farm BillWASHINGTON (Thursday Afternoon, May 22) – Capping months of effort by the Vermont Congressional Delegation, the MILC Program – the basic safety net for dairy farmers when milk prices plummet – became law Thursday afternoon when the US Senate joined the US House of Representatives in overriding President Bushs veto of a new 5-year Farm Bill.The Vermont Congressional Delegation – Sen. Patrick Leahy (D), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I) and Rep. Peter Welch (D) – toasted the victory in the U.S. Capitol with champagne glasses of milk, a tradition that has accompanied the Delegation’s earlier victories on the MILC Program and on its predecessor program, the Northeast Dairy Compact.The extension and expansion of the MILC Program, including a new “feed cost adjuster” that for the first time will also take into account dairy farmers rising production costs, was engineered in the Senate Agriculture Committee by Leahy, and Sanders and Welch worked closely with Leahy in building a bipartisan and multi-regional coalition of support for the plan.Though the MILC Program’s section of the Farm Bill is now law, the unrelated trade policy section may face a re-vote, after an enrolling snafu inadvertently dropped the trade title from the version of the Farm Bill vetoed by the President.Leahy said, “This is a milestone moment for several key Vermont priorities, from our dairy farms to our community food pantries to cleaning up Lake Champlain. The dairy safety net is secure and its stronger than before, and that will help Vermonts farmers plan for the future.”Sanders said, “At a time when family farmers are struggling, and the cost of grain and fuel is soaring, this is enormously important. Not only is this a step forward for family farmers in Vermont and around this country, but a huge step forward for nutrition and addressing the growing hunger problems in America. I thank Senator Leahy for his work on the Agriculture Committee.”Welch said, “The MILC provision becoming law is a major win for Vermont and provides a critical safety net for our farmers. Our delegations commitment and teamwork to secure this dairy provision has paid off.”# # # # #
Singapore’s recession was deeper than first estimated in the second quarter as the coronavirus pandemic dealt a major blow to Asia’s trade-reliant economies.The city-state has been hit hard by COVID-19 with the country under a lockdown for most of the second quarter to curb the spread of the virus.“There continues to be significant uncertainty over how the COVID-19 situation will evolve in the coming quarters, and correspondingly, the trajectory of the economic recovery in both the global and domestic economies,” Gabriel Lim, permanent secretary for trade and industry, told a briefing. The government said it now expects full-year GDP to contract between 5 percent and 7 percent versus its previous forecast for a 4 percent to 7 percent decline. The transport and tourism hub is still facing the biggest downturn in its history.“The downgrade in second quarter and full-year GDP growth points to a slower and sluggish economic recovery,” said Chua Hak Bin, an economist at Maybank.He said strict border controls, social distancing rules and foreign worker shortages will weigh on the pace of the recovery, even though lockdown measures have been relaxed.The GDP slump marked the second consecutive quarter of contraction for the global finance hub – having declined 0.3 percent year-on-year in the first quarter and 3.1 percent quarter-on-quarter – meeting the definition for a technical recession.Singapore’s data comes as other large Asian economies such as Japan are also set to report a record contraction in the second quarter.Meanwhile, South Korea’s exports extended double digit declines in the first week of August.Economies were starting re-tighten measures after the fresh emergence of outbreaks, said Selena Ling, OCBC Bank’s head of treasury research and strategy.“That is going to dampen, if not potentially kill off, any of the recovery hopes that people were looking forward to,” she said.Singapore’s central bank had eased its monetary policy in March, while the government has pumped in nearly S$100 billion (US$72 billion) worth of stimulus to blunt the impact of the pandemic.Topics : “The outlook for the Singapore economy has weakened slightly since May.”Gross domestic product (GDP) fell a record 13.2 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, revised government data showed on Tuesday, versus the 12.6 percent drop seen in advance estimates.The economy fell 42.9 percent from the previous three months on an annualized and seasonally adjusted basis, also a record and larger than the 41.2 percent contraction in the government’s initial estimates.The data matched analyst expectations.
MASON CITY — A Rockwell man was arrested early Saturday morning after police responded to a man being held at gunpoint. Mason City police were called to the 700 block of South Van Buren at about 12:10 AM after a woman reported her husband was being held at gunpoint, with officers seeing a vehicle speed away on arrival. A pursuit went from 6th Southwest to South Monroe, eastbound on 15th Southwest and south on US Highway 65. The chase continued south of Mason City until the suspect vehicle had a mechanical issue near Owl Avenue. 26-year-old Tanner Breiner was arrested without incident and taken to the Cerro Gordo County Jail, where he was booked on charges of assault while displaying a weapon, eluding, three counts of failing to obey a traffic control device, open container, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. The Cerro Gordo County Sheriff’s Department and Iowa State Patrol assisted Mason City police.