FLINT, Michigan‚ The goal was simple, yet lofty for Kettering University’s celebration of its 100th year: Sell out Flint’s largest venue.
With a full slate of 28 performers on two stages in eight hours — including the Grammy-award winning headliner T-Pain taking the stage at 7 p.m. — Atwood Stadium is sold out for the first time in decades. The event is free, but tickets are required.
“As of Monday, July 15, the Kettering Centennial tickets were sold out — a total of 12,000. We were thrilled that the ticket was such a hot item,” said Jack Stock, director of external relations for Kettering University.
A dozen food vendors and another 11 vendors also are expected to be onsite for Centennial Fest from noon to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 20. The event also features a car show and the annual Kettering University Atwood Races proceed the festival with a 5K and 10K walk/run starting at 7:30 a.m.
“We want people to know how much we feel honored to play a part in the community over the past 100 years, and we intend to continue serving Flint in this special relationship over the next 100 years,” Stock said.
Centennial Fest is the brainchild of Kettering President Robert McMahan, planned in coordination with Flint’s own Brandon Corder, founder of Beats X Beers and a slew of new music and food events in Flint over the last year.
Related story: Bringing the big stage to Flint: Brandon Corder and Beats X Beers
Organizers promise a family friendly event with a diverse musical lineup. The main stage includes hometown artist Lyric Da Queen of X Factor fame as well as actus such as Laura Izquierdo, Def President, and Rashaad Reed.
“Kettering University is deeply appreciative of the special relationship with the Flint community. We're thankful to the citizens for the countless times over the past 100 years we've been supported,” Stock said. “We feel like we are contributing to something that is much bigger than us. It is an honor to be a part of Flint.”
The festival and concert are the latest in a series of community events hosted by Kettering since taking ownership of the facility in 2013 when it was badly in need of repairs and had sat unused for years.
With multi-million-dollar renovations including new turf, bathroom upgrades as well as masonry and lighting repairs to the facility that dates back to 1929, Kettering officially reopened Atwood Stadium in 2015.
Atwood Stadium now hosts well over 100 community events a year, including Flint City Bucks soccer games, the Vehicle City Gridiron Classic to kickoff the fall football season, plus Flint’s annual Fourth of July fireworks featuring the Flint Symphony Orchestra.
“I think the biggest thing is seeing the historic stadium filled to capacity just like the old days, with T-Pain bringing down the house,” Stock said.
For more information, check out Centennial Fest’s webpage
Flintside reporter Chris Ringler contributed to this report.