Maximum Ames Music Festival celebrates 10th anniversary


Mark Looney

Maximum Ames six co-producers: Blake Delaney, Fred Love, Bryon Dudley, Mara Spooner, Chad Watkins and Rachel Dudley.

The Maximum Ames Music Festival will take place Thursday through Sunday. Around 40 artists and bands will perform an array of different genres, including blues, indie rock, Americana rock and folk music.

Fred Love, Bryon Dudley, Rachel Dudley, Mara Spooner, Chad Watkins and Blake Delaney are the co-producers of Maximum Ames, and have been volunteering since 2018 to facilitate the festival.

The festival happens once a year in or around September. Love describes the event as a “scrappy DIY” music festival.

A celebration for the 10th year of the festival was planned for 2020, but due to COVID-19, it was all live streamed. Instead of four days, it was continuous for one day — around nine hours long. The plans were changed again in 2021, where they had a smaller and socially distanced festival.

“It just can’t compare to the live experience of the crowd, of music fans getting in the room together and really being able to celebrate and enjoy the music together,” Love said.

This original celebration’s plans will finally take place this year, and Love is ready to discover new bands.

“With Maximum Ames in particular, because it’s so eclectic, you’re just sort of bound to stumble onto something you didn’t even know existed, and all of a sudden it’s like your new favorite band,” Love said.

The festival shows will take place at various venues in Ames, including Alluvial Brewing, London Underground, Ames City Auditorium, KHOI, Angry Irishmen, Stephens Auditorium and Della Viti.

“Go out there and try something new; try to support local and Iowa artists,” Love said. “I guarantee you because of the diversity of the acts that we have, you’re going to find something that you love.”

General admission to most shows will be free, with some venues charging a $15 cover, and the full line-up can be found on their website.