Tabfest History

Eventbrite - 2013 TABFEST | July 26-27

Tabfest History--The Mission

The people who bring you Tabfest feel that helping those who are in unfortunate situations is our social responsibility. We as one are only part of a whole--as individuals we can come together to become something larger. With the combined effort of friends and fans, Tabfest provides that link.

Tabfest is Born: 1998

Giving back and taking action for a better good has always been the ideals of the Tabfest pioneers. With those goals in mind, Tabfest was born in the spring of 1998. The first Tabfest was simply an organized party aimed at collecting pull-tabs that were then donated to charity. The event was a success, as Tabfest-goers brought tabs and bought t-shirts, while enjoying an evening conversing with old friends while meeting new ones.
The biggest dilemma at this point was for Tabfest to pick a charity to donate the collected tabs and profits. After some discussion it was agreed upon that the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) would be the beneficiary, being a well-known charity that is famous for collecting pull-tabs. More specifically, Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Miami Valley became the target of the philanthropy in an attempt to keep the giving local.

Tradition: 1999

The second year of Tabfest, which was in the summer of 1999, catered to a slightly larger crowd. The location chosen was a park that was traditionally used for open-air dances. This was the first year with entertainment, which consisted of a DJ. Again tabs were collected and t-shirts were sold to raise money for the RMHC.

Let There Be Songs to Fill the Air: 2000

The summer of 2000 gave birth to a new and more mature Tabfest. Tabfest was no longer just a few college students enjoying themselves while contributing to charity--Tabfest became an established, professional event.
This was the first year with live entertainment, which included bands like The Shantee, The One-Eyed Show, Grasshopper Pie, The Big Creek, Brian Bocian and others. The event lasted for two days and was located in Mendon, Ohio. Approximately 600-700 people were on hand for the festival and 32 gallons of tabs were collected for the RMHC. The weekend was a success and it set the standard for 2001.


Tabfest 2001 established a new standard. Over 1000 Tabfest attendees enjoyed an entire weekend of some of the finest musical talent in Ohio, while also helping to donate $3500.00 and over 32 gallons of aluminum can tabs to Ronald McDonald House Charities. Bands performing at this edition of Tabfest included The Shantee, Peach Melba, The One-Eyed Show, Grasshopper Pie, Uncle Sam's Dream Machine, Color Wheel, Eric Zielinski, Waxy Monx, Brian Bocian and Friends, Capt'n Jackpot and Vynyl Groove.


A fantastic musical lineup, great weather and the usual tremendous vibe helped Tabfest 2002 break attendance and charity contribution records. Featuring event hosts Grasshopper Pie and The One-Eyed Show, alongside Tabfest veterans The Shantee, Peach Melba, USDM and more, the 2002 edition witnessed great music from newcomers like The Recipe, Guest and Skeleton Crew.
Word spread nationwide about this little festival in west central Ohio. The weekend of July 26 and 27, 2002, suddenly the Mendon Speedway doubled the population of Mendon, Ohio, setting Tabfest attendance records with 1500 festival goers living it up with great music at a wonderful venue.


Tabfest 2003 was the most exciting and successful year to date, as New Riders of the Purple Sage founder, David Nelson and his San Francisco-based band capped off a huge weekend of music and philanthropy with a blistering Saturday night set of music.
Buoyed by the largest attendance ever, Tabfest was able to add to their donation totals to RMHC of the Miami Valley. To date, Tabfest has contributed $12,000.00 and over 1000 pounds of aluminum can tabs!


Thanks to the nearly 2000 attendees who supported Tabfest 2004. It was another amazing weekend of fantastic music, charity and positive energy that was capped off by a blistering set of music by Dickey Betts and Great Southern.


Melvin Seals and the Jerry Garcia Band teamed up with the David Nelson Band to put an exclamation point on the 8th edition of Tabfest. 2005 saw the largest tab donations ever, as festival attendees chipped in 850 POUNDS of tabs!


The 9th edition of Tabfest featured performances by Event Co-Producers Grasshopper Pie and The One-Eyed Show as well as Freekbass, One Under, Mike Perkins, Skeleton Crew, Uncle Sam's Dream Machine, JP and the Chatfield Boys, Lubriphonic and many more. Tabfest 2006 was coined "Back To Our Roots" as we got back to the basics of what has made us successful, stacking stellar Local music on Friday while featuring a Regional musical showcase on Saturday spanning rock, funk, bluegrass, reggae, jazz and beyond.


Tabfest donated another $3,000.00 and contributed almost 1,400 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Tabfest donated another $3,000 and over 1,500 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Tabfest donated $5,000 and over 1,000 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Tabfest donated $6,000 and approximately 2,340 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Tabfest donated $5,000 and approximately 690 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Tabfest donated approximately 530 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Tabfest donated approximately 558 POUNDS of aluminum can tabs!


Running donation totals: $37,000.00 and approximately 10,278 pounds of tabs. Yeehaw.