Michigan’s Woodstock: The Goose Lake Festival

Goose Lake International Music Festival

Goose Lake International Music Festival, 1970, photo by Michigan State Police (courtesy Archives of Michigan)

The massive Goose Lake International Music Festival took place August 7-9, 1970 near Jackson. Seeking Michigan’s feature Michigan’s Woodstock relates:

Performers included Rod Stewart and Faces, Jethro Tull, Chicago, Ten Years After, Mountain, the Flying Burrito Brothers and prominent Michigan acts such as Bob Seeger, Mitch Ryder, the Stooges, and the MC5. Approximately two hundred thousand people attended.

It began with a man named Richard Songer. In 1970, Songer was thirty-five and the owner of Portland Construction Company, a successful business in Southfield, Michigan. He purchased 350 acres near Goose Lake, located outside Jackson.

Songer intended to turn his Goose Lake property into a permanent park and live music venue. He hired people to pave parking lots and build large concrete rest rooms. A permanent revolving stage was built. As a band performed on one side of the stage, another band would be behind them, preparing to go on. When the first band finished, the stage would turn, and the second band would immediately appear.

You can read on for more and here’s several more links:

Photo caption: A crowded parking area at the Goose Lake International Music Festival, 1970. Photo from State Police records, RG 90-240, housed in the Archives of Michigan

4 thoughts on “Michigan’s Woodstock: The Goose Lake Festival

  1. We camped here in the late 70’s early 80′ and it was called Greenwood Acres. They converted the speaker tower to giant swings. Family camp and the kids had a fun time.


  2. I went to the festival and the next year my grandparents leased a lot at the now greenwood acres. Awesome both the concert and the campground for two really different reasons…..The stage was turned into the rec house and I well remember the swings make out of the speaker and lighting towers. a real piece of Michigan history.


    1. Im Sandy Songer, Richards daughter. I was to young to go to the festival, but I spent along of time at Greenacres. There is a lot of history


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