Q&A with Rezfest founder Glen Dry
Jennifer Lee Preyss
March 11, 2013 at 8:01 p.m.
Updated March 11, 2013 at 10:12 p.m.
IF YOU GO
• WHAT: RezFest featuring MercyMe, Francesca Battistelli, The Afters
• WHEN: March 23. Gate opens at noon; outside stage begins at 1 p.m.; general seating begins at 3 p.m.; Interstate Battery stage begins at 4 p.m.
• WHERE: Brackenridge Main Event Center, Edna, 284 Brackenridge Parkway
• COST: Gold circle, $100; stadium, $20-25; balcony, $10-$15; parking pass, $5 per car; pre-show festival is free.
When RezFest hit the Brackenridge Main Event Center stage three years ago, the Rev. Glen Dry sat on a park bench inside the main lobby and paused to listen to a crowd of thousands roaring to MercyMe's hit song, "Move."
Dry realized then God was allowing him to carry out one of his longstanding visions for ministry - to bring a major Christian concert to South Texas to celebrate Easter weekend.
The Dove Award-winning and Grammy nominated MercyMe will be at Brackenridge on March 23 to headline RezFest once again.
And this year, Dry expects the show will be bigger than ever.
Grammy nominated Francesca Battistelli, on tour with Dove Award-winning The Afters, is also scheduled to perform.
RezFest is also introducing a pre-show festival of outdoor family activities this year, featuring bounce houses, a kids' zone, disc golf, miniature golf and concessions.
Live bands will perform on the outside stage beginning at 1 p.m., before doors open at 3 p.m. for general seating near the Interstate Batteries main stage.
Dry spoke to the Advocate about why RezFest is destined to be one of South Texas' biggest Christian concerts and why he's excited to be, for the first time, the event's special guest speaker.
Why did you want MercyMe to return after three years? Why not another headliner?
Because I love their music and the environment they create. It's not just a concert; it's more of an incredible evening of music, rather than just a concert. It's their third time back to the Victoria area, and MercyMe loves coming here because the community is so supportive of them. They love to go where they know the people love to hear them.
Francesca Battistelli was already on tour, so we just invited her tour to be a part of the show.
How is RezFest different this year?
We have a lot of new things this year. Instead of opening for just an evening concert, we're going to have activities for families all day. It's $5 per car, and all the activities outside the arena are free. We'll have live music on the outside stages - good bands. So even if you don't have a concert ticket, families can come enjoy the festival activities. It's a full day with more of a festival feel than just an evening concert. It's similar to the Outdoor Expo, only smaller. It's something I've wanted to build into RezFest for a while.
And you're speaking this year. That's different. What will your main message be?
I think my main message will be reminding everybody of the importance and significance of Christ during this Easter season and the difference that it can make in our lives and with our families.
Do you think RezFest concertgoers are attending to listen to great music or celebrate Easter?
With spring break being so close to Easter this year, Easter is probably not on their mind. But I hope I can do a good job of reminding everyone about the significance of this holiday. We call it a holiday, but sometimes we don't do a good job of emphasizing the significance of an event that changed the whole world.
Since you're on the lineup, do you plan to relax during the show to prepare for your talk?
No. I'm the fireman. I'm the guy who is making sure every one of our guests is having a great time. I'm running around learning how we can do (RezFest) better and how we can serve others better.
Are you as excited to organize the event this year as you were the first year of RezFest?
I'm even more excited; the significance is even greater. This year, people have given gifts for some high school students to attend free of charge, and it's great knowing this event could change their lives. It helps keep me motivated that this could help future generations. For high school students, it's the most pivotal years of their lives, and if we can help reach one of those students, it's worth it. RezFest may help them take the next step in their faith.
Why do you continue to build RezFest?
God has really challenged me to provide opportunities to invite others to participate in activities where people are either invited to know Christ or share Christ. It's going to grow.
Why should people attend RezFest?
Because it will change their life. They'll get to experience something close to home they would never get to experience otherwise. I would come because it's the cleanest, friendliest, family-friendly event you can find.