2016 May Be Last Year for Popular Beatles Festival in Louisville

Will Abbey Road on the River leave Louisville?

Photo © Myron Koch - Peak Summit Studios

What!?! Did you hear the news?! 2016 will be the final year for Abbey Road on the River in Louisville. The popular Memorial Day festival may move elsewhere.

In the beginning, or so the story goes, The Galt House Hotel was excited to be pairing up with festival organizers. Over the years there have been ownership issues and the festival organizers now feel that the hotel on Main Street thinks that ownership of Abbey Road on The River belongs to The Galt House.

"The festival does not belong to the Galt House," says Gary Jacob, founder and organizer of Abbey Road on the River. "It's ours, and so we will spend the next year either finding someone in Louisville who wants to buy Abbey Road On The River, or we will find a new city and a hotel up the 1-71 corridor where the hotel (to which we bring millions of dollars in travel business to) does not do things that are harmful to the festival just because they think they can."

Organizers have informed all of their major partners - Wave 3 News, The Louisville Convention and Visitors Bureau, and The Muhammad Ali Center - and while all wish it was different, they all understand why this decision is being made. 2016 will be a blowout...festival organizers promise to make it the best farewell party the city will ever imagine!

(Do you think this might change? It could, Galt House officials said in a statement on Facebook they hope the decision will be reconsidered and it would be beneficial for Abbey Road on the River to stay. The festival has been in Louisville for over a decade, Abbey Road on the River moved to Louisville from Cleveland in 2005.

What is Abbey Road On The River?

Abbey Road on the River is a festival of all things Fab Four. In other words, Abbey Road on the River is a five-day, multi-stage music festival celebrating the music and the culture of The Beatles. The festival takes place in Louisville, Kentucky over Memorial Day weekend, and in the Washington, D.C. area over Labor Day weekend. Fans and music lovers flock to the festivals and oodles of tribute bands play the music of The Beatles.

The mission:

"Because John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr made the world a happier place, we promise to extend their vision by creating a welcoming and carefree environment for their fans to come together with friends and family to experience their gift of music, written and performed with peace, love, and non-violence at its heart.

We further pledge to emulate their gentleness and compassion, and as John and George lived on their own terms, so too, do Paul and Ringo continue to live in good health and communicate their unique talents and love for humanity.

It is with great respect and gratitude that we celebrate their music and
the spirit that continues to bring us all together.

In their names, we pledge to have fun."