Music festival ‘Karate Camp’ celebrates local musicians

On+Friday%2C+Sept.+9%2C+Winona+based+band+%E2%80%9CKarate+Chop+Silence%E2%80%9D+hosted+the+second+annual+%E2%80%9CKarate+Camp.%E2%80%9D+This+weekend-long+event+is+a+music+festival+dedicated+to+local+bands+and+artists.

JIovani Bermudez

On Friday, Sept. 9, Winona based band “Karate Chop Silence” hosted the second annual “Karate Camp.” This weekend-long event is a music festival dedicated to local bands and artists.

Jiovani Bermudez, Features Reporter

On Friday, Sept. 9, Winona based band “Karate Chop Silence” hosted the second annual “Karate Camp.” This weekend-long event is a music festival dedicated to local bands and artists. As several members of the Winona area community prepared their tents for the event, they were greeted with a rush of music, food and fellow music lovers. 

The festival took place at Briggs Outdoors, a local venue surrounded by enchanting views of the bluffs and wide fields. The true event started at 4 p.m. with a live show by the Sugar Lad, a local band consisting of Winona State alumni and students including former program director at KQAL, Isaac Yanta. Yanta shared his love for the event.

“[Karate Camp] is the perfect collection of the Winona music scene,” Yanta shared.

After the Sugar Lads came some more fan favorites from around Winona including Mae Simpson Space, Monkey Mafia, The Lavender Project and more. The performances went late into the night, with live shows and a crowd cheering with each performance. As the performances grew quiet, the party continued with the musical stylings of a DJ, usually a member of Karate Chop Silence.

Saturday started with gloomy weather, foggy bluffs were accompanied by a depressing drizzle. Despite the weather, the people were wide and ready with excitement. The DJ was playing music for people to dance while another group of individuals kicked a ball around. It was a rare case of complete strangers coming together to experience a love of the outdoors and music. The attendants were all willing to share their love for the event as well.

“It’s a beautiful place to be out in nature. The atmosphere and energy here is very positive,” Winona resident, Pippa Armstrong, said.

Fans had the opportunity to meet and interact with their favorite local artist who roamed and enjoyed the festivities. This provided a more welcoming sensation as the people performing were there to share and enjoy music just like the fans. (Jiovani Bermudez)

This sentiment was shared by several who attended. Many of the attendees were not from the Winona area, including Minneapolis resident, Chaz Mayo.

“It’s a pretty magical thing,” Mayo said.

The live music started at 2:30 p.m. with local artist DJ Ramble. A crowd formed around the stage swiftly and the excitement snowballed into dancing and applause with each passing song. Following the first performance came more Winona favorites including The Shackletons, Heatbox and Karate Chop Silence. The audience was alight with fans cheering, dancing and interacting with the music on stage which was accompanied by breathtaking light arrays that elevated the experience.

Beyond that, fans could meet and interact with their favorite local artist who roamed and enjoyed the festivities all the same. This provided a more welcoming sensation as the people performing were there to share and enjoy music just like the fans.

“It’s kinda our way of supporting our friends and family in the music scene…It’s kinda like our big part we like to throw for our friends in Winona,” Ryan Amble, a member of Karate Chop Silence, shared.

Amble continued, “This is what we put one hundred percent of our heart and soul into, and we really want to make this something special for Winona and our fans.”

With the final performance came the end to Karate Camp. The members of Karate Chop Silence were happy with its growing attendance and hope to put the event on once again next year with growing anticipation from long time fans, first time attendees and simply fans of local music.