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Sugarloaf hosts its thirty-fifth annual Reggae Fest

From Apr. 6 to 9, Sugarloaf Mountain Ski Resort hosted its thirty-fifth annual Reggae Fest. Presented by Baxter Outdoors, the festival hosted numerous reggae acts that performed throughout the day and night. Many attendees also enjoyed spring skiing. Some dressed in creative costumes, including a Viking family and Power Ranger friend groups.

The skiing conditions varied throughout the weekend. The mountain was hit with high wind speeds, which caused the lifts to shut down on Friday. Luckily, skiers were given credit for their lift tickets that they could redeem at any point within the next year. While still windy, Saturday skiing was open with sunny conditions. Regardless of the weather, Reggae Fest was still filled with positive energy and good vibes. 

“The skiing was ideal spring skiing. It was beautiful, warm weather. I didn’t even have to wear a ski jacket. The energy on the mountain was amazing. I skinned up with Katie and was joined by a lot of people. Everyone was cheering everyone else on,” Heloise Evins-Mackenzie `24, who participated in Reggae Fest, said.

On Friday, Mighty Mystic and 10 Ft. Ganja Plant headlined the evening in the King Pine Room. Mighty Mystic, also known as Kevin Mark Holness, is a Massachusetts-based reggae artist who is from Jamaica originally and the younger brother of the current Jamaican Prime Minister. 10 Ft. Ganja Plant, similarly based out of Boston, is a notable reggae band with over 920,000 monthly listeners on Spotify. 

On Saturday, acts began at 10:30 a.m. and continued until 12:45 a.m. The daytime festivities took place outdoors with many joining the party after skiing. On top of the typical restaurants, food trucks serving pizza and Jamaican food were available for attendees. The band Tropidelic finished the evening in the King Pine Room. The six-person group from Cleveland, OH boasts over 356,000 monthly listeners on Spotify. Its music is a blend of reggae, hip-hop, and funk. 

“I had never gone to a reggae concert before, so I didn’t come in with any expectations. The first band surprised me because they were so good. The members of the band rotated what instrument they were playing, which I thought was impressive and showed their musical creativity. They had such great energy that got the crowd going,” Evins-Mackenzie said. “The next band was definitely influenced by hip-hop. The trumpet soloist would come into the crowd which got the crowd really hype.” 

Sunday was a much quieter day as the event came to an end. Musical performances lasted until 3:30 p.m. The roads leading back to Waterville and Portland were filled, showing the success and popularity of this year’s Reggae Fest. 

“I would totally go back for Reggae Fest. The atmosphere at the Beach was one of my favorite experiences at Colby. There were so many Colby kids there with great food and weather. I think everyone should try to go during the day next year,” Evins-Mackenzie concluded.


~ Adrian Visscher `24

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