Couvapalooza gets bigger, still has yet to break even

Organizers, already eyeing next year, call music fest a success

By Sue Vorenberg, Columbian features reporter

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The crowd for the second Couvapalooza music festival was about five times larger than the first, but the annual show still has a ways to go before it breaks even.

About 1,500 people attended the Aug. 17 all-day event, which had 16 bands, including headliner Everclear, on two stages at the Clark College campus.

There's still a lot of work to be done to build the festival, but organizers Heidi Hahn-Troxler and her husband Michael Troxler are calling it a success.

"It went really well," Hahn-Troxler said. "It ran very, very smoothly."

The event, which cost about $50,000 to put together this year, is a fundraiser for Clark County school music programs. Since it didn't break even, the Troxlers are donating $1,000 each to the La Center Music Foundation, Hockinson School District, Battle Ground Band Boosters, Bridges Northwest and the Clark College Foundation, they said.

Despite losing money, the couple said they plan to keep going and are dedicated to using the event to support music in Clark County schools.

"I'm really excited for next year," Hahn-Troxler said. "I'm excited that we had Everclear play. We're already lining up some of our headline bands for next year."

Next year, the couple may expand the festival to a multiday event so that more young, emerging talent can participate. They're also considering moving the dates in hopes of drawing larger crowds.

"We're wondering if it's not because many people are on vacation in mid-August," Hahn-Troxler said.

The festival is gaining recognition, even if it is in the early stages, they added.

"We had people come in from as far away as Indianapolis," Troxler said.

The pair also wanted to thank all the volunteers who helped out with the show. And they have some other good news for next year.

"Everyone there was really impressed, and even (Everclear frontman) Art Alexakis and his family were there enjoying the show most of the day," Troxler said. "Afterwards, he told me they think it's a great cause and they'd be honored to come back next year."