Last year, Las Vegas’ annual Punk Rock Bowling tournament surged from an industry gathering to a full-fledged music festival, with three nights of shows at Sunset Station. In May, the event makes another big move, to Downtown Las Vegas, where more than 85 acts will play over our four days—Memorial Day weekend, May 27-30—on an outdoor stage and inside several small clubs nearby. “Last year worked out really well, but we had this opportunity to go Downtown so we took it,” says co-promoter Mark Stern of BYO Records. “I love the idea of taking over that whole East Fremont area.”
• The outdoor stage will be set up on 6th Street, which will be blocked off just south of Fremont for a capacity of 3,500 attendees. Music there will run from 3:30-11 p.m. Saturday and Sunday and from 2:30-10 p.m. on Monday.
• Massachusetts Celtic-punks Dropkick Murphys will headline Saturday’s lineup; reunited SoCal hardcore outfit the Descendents will headline Sunday; and London streetpunks Cock Sparrer will headline Monday. The May 28 show will mark the first billed Descendents’ U.S. headlining set in 14 years, according to Stern. Festival headliners will receive set times around 70 minutes long.
• Also announced thus far: Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, Bouncing Souls, Dwarves, Manic Hispanic and The Undertones (minus original singer Feargal Sharkey).
• Friday, Saturday and Sunday will also feature late-night shows scattered throughout Downtown, at venues such as Beauty Bar, the Bunkhouse, Las Vegas Country Saloon and Azul Tequila. The Beat will also be utilized in some capacity.
• Bowling will return to Sam’s Town, with shuttles running between that hotel and Downtown’s California Hotel. Those, along with an as-yet-determined Downtown property, will serve as the host hotels for out-of-towners. Bowling is currently open for returning teams only.
• Three-day outdoor stage passes will cost $90, with a limited number available at the “early-bird” price of $80 beginning at midnight Friday night through punkrockbowling.com. Single-day outdoor stage tickets will be offered for $35. Prices of the late-night club shows (not included in the three-day outdoor pass) will range from $10 to $15 apiece.
• Outdoor-stage shows will be all-ages. Club shows will be 21-and-over.
Stay tuned for updates on the outdoor lineup and individual club bills. “We’ve got some really cool stuff planned,” Stern promises. “Stuff that’s gonna make it really special.”