Comfest 2016 logo - a skyline with tree roots

June 24-26 ComFest will fill Goodale Park once again with local music, art, food, crafts, workshops, and revelry. The festival has lots of diverse offerings, so guests are sure to find something for everyone.

This being an important election year, people can expect speakers and panels to express and explain progressive viewpoints on topics as far-ranging as economic justice, environmental crises, and voting rights. There will be workshops about gender identity and sexism, new trends and development in Columbus, local control of environment and resources, big money in local politics and how residents are represented in city council – the ward system or at large. Guest speakers will make remarks in support of labor and Planned Parenthood and other issues. And ComFest is one way to make sure you are registered correctly to vote, and learn how to defend your right to have your vote counted.

While ComFest is a celebration of local, special guests from other regions are sometimes invited to share their unique talents. This year the festival is excited to feature Guante, a nationally acclaimed educator, poet/spoken word performer, and activist voice for social, political, and economic justice. Guante embodies ComFest principles and values, and though he comes to Columbus by way of Minnesota, he is of “the beloved community.” His message focuses on how to turn art into activism, how to organize for change using tools beyond mainstream media and money, and how to speak for justice through creation.

On Saturday, Guante will conduct a workshop following an important “HipHop and Social Change” panel discussion with Columbus artists Speak Williams, SupaNatra, Dominique Larue, and touring artist NesWordz. Guante will deliver a dynamic performance from the Bozo Stage Sunday afternoon. 

Much of ComFest will be familiar to veteran attendees. Free Press Salon. Simply Living Meet Up. KidsArt. Drum Circles. Social Action Song Swap. Yoga, Qi Gong, Pilates. Life changing Healing Arts workshops. Poetry readings and competitions. Comedy sketches and stand-up. Join ComFest for the Awards Ceremony Saturday afternoon at Bozo Stage to celebrate the 2016 honored community artist, activist, organization, and volunteers. 

And it's all “Powered by Community!” The 2016 tee shirt slogan sums it up. Because ComFest is a 501c3 and a Volunteer operated Festival (from organizers to the shared talents of workshop presenters and speakers to bands, comics, poets, dancers, holistic healers and guides, and thousands of people working on site during the festival), ComFest is able and committed to putting money back into the community via grants, gifts, and donations. The festival is free, but your generous support of ComFest vendors, merchandise and beer benefit people and projects throughout the year. So go online to, click on volunteers and sign up to be part of the best festival in central Ohio. 

Look for the Community Festival Program Guide by mid- June in restaurants, bars, and libraries for schedules and information, 

Happy ComFest! 


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