The Festival

The South Bend Firefighters Blues Festival was conceived in 1999 as a way to raise funds to create a fire safety house for the South Bend community. The first festival had an attendance of 750 people. Since that time the festival has attracted such legendary blues performers as Bernard Allison, Chicago Rhythm and Blues Kings, Guitar Shorty and Wayne Baker Brooks and the attendance has grown to over 7,500. Over the years it has raised funds not only for the Survive Alive House and Hoosier Burn Camp but also for GPS units for Memorial Hospital's pediatric transports, Memorial Hospital's Pediatric Unit, the Firefighter's Memorial at Sietz Park and the Children's Dream Fund. Originally at the South Bend Regional Airport's Corporate Wings, the festival moved to the Crumstown Conservation Club in 2008 and to Kamm Island Park in 2018. The festival provides a venue for local artists in addition to its headliners. The Local 362 All Stars performs regularly at the festival as well as Michiana's own Elwood Splinters Blues Band, featuring Ole Harv, the host of the Blues Review on WVPE.