GO Outside Festival celebrates all things outdoors

The 2012 GO Outside Festival, a celebration of all things outdoors, returns in October with free exhibits, trials and activities for the entire family.

Go Outside Festival celebrates all things outdoors

Event to feature exhibits, demos, camping, live music, adventure films and more

ROANOKE, Va. (September 20, 2012) – The 2012 Go Outside Festival, a celebration of all things outdoors, returns in October with free exhibits, trials and activities for the entire family.

Roanoke, considered one of the East’s best outdoor towns, is the ideal setting for the region’s most diverse sampling of outdoor adventure.

The Go Outside Festival, or GO FEST, is presented by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Held Oct. 19-21 at the Rivers Edge Sports Complex on Reserve Avenue, it’s filled with the things outdoor enthusiasts love – and just about everything is free.

The annual City of Roanoke Parks and Recreation event, supported by the Roanoke Regional Partnership, encourages healthy, active outdoor recreation.

“Outdoor recreation not only adds to our region’s quality of life, it’s also an economic driver that attracts jobs and people,” says Pete Eshelman, director of outdoor branding for the Roanoke Regional Partnership. “This year’s festival gives families a chance to try new things, meet old friends and celebrate our growing outdoor culture.”

Like last year, admission to everything except competitive events is free. GO FEST features a host of outdoor activities, both competitive and non-competitive, including professional athletes, guided hikes and rides, trail runs, equipment demos, mountain bike races, gear sales, disc golf, geocache trail, and lots more.

Highlights include:

  • Live music, from traditional African gospel to Appalachian string-band to Latin.
  • Subaru Ultimate Air Dog show and Flyball demo
  • Gibbon Slackline athletes (as seen during the Super Bowl halftime show)
  • Giant Bicycle athlete Jeff Lenosky (world bunny hop record holder)
  • KEEN "Take the Recess Pledge" photobooth
  • Huffy Bike Toss
  • Shaff Adventure Film Festival
  • Sierra Nevada Torpedo Race
  • Tons of demos
  • Plus lots more

The festival will feature such national brands as KEEN, Specialized, Raleigh, Gibbon Slacklines, Mountain Khakis, Ruffwear, Subaru, Giant, Innova Discs, Bellayk, Sylvan Sport Trailers, and Sierra Nevada.

Dogs are allowed to participate throughout the weekend providing they’re on leashes.

The day isn’t over when the sun sets. Before climbing into your tent, listen to live music or watch adventure films from the Sheffield Adventure Film Festival.

“Roanoke is well on its way to becoming a major outdoor industry center,” Eshelman says. “This community event is another way we’re showing the outdoor industry there are people here committed to seeing this industry grow as they discover new activities right here in our backyard. This isn't your ordinary sit-in-your-seat kind of event – you’re encouraged to get involved. Walk around, touch gear, try stuff out and, above all, have fun.”

Kid-friendly events include a climbing wall, speed-climbing competition, inflatable obstacle course, SUP simulator, tether ball, disc golf, a geocache trail, and more.

Gates open Friday at 5 p.m. and close Sunday at 5 p.m. Visitors can come and go as they please. Camping is free. Music is featured daily from 5-8:30 p.m. on Friday and noon-10 p.m. on Saturday.

Please visit www.roanokegofest.com for details. The site is being regularly updated as events and activities are added.

Other festival sponsors include Sierra Nevada, First Team Subaru, K92, Parks and Recreation, Roanoke Outside, Ride Solutions, Cardinal Bicycle, WSET and Walkabout Outfitter. Additional sponsorships are available.


The Roanoke Regional Partnership markets Alleghany, Botetourt, Franklin and Roanoke counties, Roanoke, Salem, and Vinton to new and expanding industry. Since 1983, the Partnership has assisted expansions and locations representing $1.3 billion in new investment and nearly 14,000 direct new jobs in the region. To learn more, visit www.Roanoke.org, www.RoanokeOutside.com and www.RoanokeEntrepreneur.com.


Anthem Health Plans of Virginia, Inc. trades as Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Virginia, and its service area is all of Virginia except for the City of Fairfax, the Town of Vienna, and the area east of State Route 123. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and its affiliated HMO HealthKeepers, Inc. are independent licensees of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Virginia is available at www.anthem.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/healthjoinin, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HealthJoinIn, or visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/healthjoinin.