- Associated Press - Sunday, August 17, 2014

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) - A Wednesday night rock show at the Brown County Fair hasn’t exactly been a common occurrence in recent years, but this year was different, and concertgoers outside the Larry Gerlach Grandstand didn’t seem the least bit bothered.

“I’m ready to rock,” said Paula Kokales of Groton, while waiting in line to enter the Rockers Ball, which was headlined by 1980s cover band Hairball. “This will be the first time we’ve seen Hairball at an outdoor concert. They put on a great show. I’m just ready for the pyrotechnics and a great rock show.”

Hoping to capitalize on the rock music crowd in the Aberdeen area and beyond - country has traditionally dominated fair music lineups - Rockers Ball was put together in large part by Aberdeen-based Lamont Companies, Aberdeen American News (https://bit.ly/XkWun5 ) reported.

The feeling heading into the event, which sold close to 1,200 tickets as of Tuesday, was that, if rock fans turned out in droves, more acts would perform at the fair in the future. Traditionally, Wednesday nights have featured races instead of rockers.

“I think this is a great idea and I hope it catches on,” said Teri Zerr of Aberdeen, who waited in line to purchase tickets for her college-aged daughter and her friends. “People want to see something besides country. Country music is big in this area, but there are a lot of rock fans here, too. I think there’s a whole other group of concertgoers that would come to shows like this.”

Among the first people to get in line to enter the grandstand area when doors opened were Bob and Karen Kaiser of Ellendale, North Dakota. Described by Karen as the “rocker” of the family, Bob counts AC/DC and Lynyrd Skynyrd among the bands that he’s seen live.

“I’m looking forward to tonight,” he said. “You can’t really beat the Brown County Fair. It’s free admission to the fair and they have some pretty good acts come through. The ticket packages they have for all the concerts - that’s a really good deal.”

Bob Zwart, the lead singer for Judd Hoos, which opened for Hairball on Wednesday, said before the show that he and his bandmates enjoy playing in Aberdeen.

“We play a lot of towns, but Aberdeen has been very loyal to Judd Hoos,” Zwart said. “We’ve sold a lot of CDs to people in this town and it’s always been a great stop. We love a lot of South Dakota stops, but Aberdeen has been great to us.”

While he had some in the stands fooled into thinking he was part of Hairball, sporting his full Kiss costume complete with make-up, Greg Omodt of Brookings said he’s seen Hairball live “about 20 times” and enjoys the show the band puts on.

“Hairball is always fun,” said Omodt between picture requests from concertgoers. “I have a great time every time I see them perform.”


Information from: Aberdeen American News, https://www.aberdeennews.com

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