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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014

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In Music

The Battle of the Bands launches Horny Goat's new Big Fun Tent, seen here in an architect's rendering.

In Music

Pete and the Hot Mess is one of four bands doing battle at the first Horny Goat Battle of the Bands.

Band battle launches Horny Goat's heated winter wondertent


Horny Goat Brewing Company, 2011 S. 1st St., hosts its first Goat Fest Battle of the Bands, Saturday, Nov. 12, at 5 p.m., and the plan is to make it an annual competition.

The competition victor earns four paid summer 2012 gigs at the Horny Goat Hideaway, as well as cash and prizes.

"This is one of the biggest prize packages I have ever put together for the winning band," says organizer Roy Henning, who also runs the annual Break Into the Big Gig band battle.

"It includes a $1,000 gift card from Educators Credit Union, Packers tickets, a trip to Las Vegas, a professionally edited promotional video of the band's performance and they receive a portion of the door proceeds, as well. The total prize package should be around $10,000."

Three of the four bands doing battle – 500 Miles to Memphis, Beaker, Pete and the Hot Mess and Something To Do – are rock and blues bands from the Milwaukee area. 500 Miles to Memphis hails from Cincinnati.

Each will get time to perform original and cover songs. Audience members will get a ballot and will judge each band on performance, songwriting and overall energy.

Bands and patrons can also feel good about participating in the event because Horny Goat has also committed to donating a portion of the event's proceeds to Hunger Task Force. Patrons are asked to bring at least two non-perishable food items that will also go to HTF. In exchange, they'll get a free beer.

The battle is part of a larger event launching Horny Goat's new Big Fun Tent (BFT), and kicks off a series of events to inaugurate the BFT.

The permanent structure will house a stage, dance floor, four heated volleyball courts – coils will heat the sand from below – and a 10-by-16-foot plasma screen TV to show sports events.

There will also be seating for 200 people.

The charitable aspect of the event is a continuation of the brew pub's ongoing contributions program in which 10 percent of sales from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. Sundays is donated to a local non-profit.

So far, Horny Goat has donated more than $11,000 to the MACC Fund, Hope House of Milwaukee, Habitat for Humanity, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and others.

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