Freakfest, a legendary Halloween festivity in Madison, is widely known as one of the largest Halloween parties in the area. Let’s dive deeper and look at the rich history of its inception, and dive into all the details of Freakfest 2019!
Halloween on State Street was first inaugurated by University of Wisconsin students back in the 1970s. It first started as an informal, student-organized block party. Seeing its potential as a great fundraising opportunity, the student government started sponsoring the event. They assisted with securing street permits and alcohol permits, as well as hiring security. This partnership ended in 1986 when the legal drinking age changed from 18 to 21, and the Wisconsin Student Association was no longer able to continue raising funds by supporting the annual Halloween party.
However, the partying continued to grow and the State Street Halloween party attracted crowds as large as 100,000 with attendees from nearby states as well as community members and students.
Since 2006, this annual celebration has been a gated and ticketed event organized by the City of Madison known as Freakfest. State Street is barricaded for partygoers, and 3 music stages are placed throughout the blocked area. Previous years have featured nationally known talent including OAR, Matt and Kim, Third Eye Blind, and the late Mac Miller.
This year’s diverse lineup includes Lil Yachty and Gin Blossoms and runs from 7 pm to 1:30 am on Saturday, October 26th. This is a great excuse to show off your best costume and partake in the local food and drink scene. Attendees are encouraged to stop in the local bars on State Street as alcohol is not permitted outside.
Whether you are visiting Madison for the first time or looking for a brief weekend getaway, Freakfest is definitely a sight to see. The parade of costumes and energy of nighttime revelers is unique to this annual tradition.
Pro Tip: Avoid all the hassle at stay with us at The Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor's Club in downtown Madison. We're steps away from State Street, and we'd love to be your Halloween headquarters. Book now while availability lasts!
Freakfest Madison 2019 Dates, Location, And Hours
Saturday, October 26, 2019
7 PM - 1:30 AM
State Street - Madison, Wisconsin
For the most up-to-date information about Freakfest, visit their website.
Freakfest Madison 2019 Bands Lineup
The Mountain Dew Stage at Capitol Square
Ian’s Pizza Stage at Gilman Street
German Art Students
The Heavy Looks
No Love Dog
LÜM Stage at Frances Street
Freakfest Madison Tickets
In Advance: $10
(plus applicable fees and/or taxes)
Tickets are available online at Ticketmaster or in-person at the following local outlets:
B-Sides Records, Knuckleheads, Ragstock, Sunshine Daydream, University Book Store, The Soap Opera, Community Pharmacy, High Noon Saloon, Ian’s Pizza, Los Gemelos, The Sylvee Box Office, Orpheum Box Office (Saturday Only)
Book A Hotel For Freakfest In Madison
Looking for a hotel near Freakfest? Stay with us at The Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor’s Club. Your comfortable room for the night could be just steps away from all the action. Book at the Governor’s Club level and receive complimentary top-shelf cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, desserts, and breakfast.
Reserve your room now while availability lasts!