John Nichols at FightingBobFest North

John Nichols delivers the last regular speech at FightingBobFest North last year.  This was a great crowd please, and a good example of the kind of thing you willl see this year.  John has just agreed to return to speak in 2012.

FightingBobFest North 2012

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March 25, 2012 Jim Dunning, (715) 839-0039

FightingBobFest North Returns to Chippewa Falls


(Chippewa Falls) – “We are the 99%” will be the theme for the 2012 FightingBobFest North as it returns to the Northern Wisconsin State Fairgrounds in Chippewa Falls on Saturday, May 19, 2012 for a full day of speakers, music and entertainment, along with artisan-style food and beverage. The public is welcome to attend this important organizing event! The event gates will open at 8:30 am.


FightingBobFest North” follows a longstanding festival tradition held in Baraboo and Madison, WI that brings today’s best progressive speakers to the Midwest to inspire local people to speak and act on critical problems that endanger important democratic principles. Dave Zweifel, Editor Emeritus of the Cap Times says that Bobfest is “a perfect place to remember Fighting Bob [LaFollette], who specialized in speaking at fairgrounds and parks around the state, urging the people to take their democracy back from the special interests.”

In 2011, this festival tradition took a trip up north, attracting over 700 people to the gathering. This year’s event promises to be even larger, drawing on the enthusiasm for fighting back that Wisconsinites demonstrated to all Americans. The theme for FightingBobFest North 2012 is “We are the 99%” which will spotlight the growing awareness and understanding of how wealth and power increasingly divides the American people.

Ed Garvey, Mike McCabe, and Ruth Conniff at last year's FightingBobFest North

Another blast from the past at last year's FightingBobFest North - We'll be adding more videos over the next few weeks.

Last Year at FightingBobFestNorth

To give you a flavor --- this is the trailer from the video of FightingBobFestNorth 2011.  Expect more of the same this year!

What do you think?

We're still in the planning stages for FightingBobFestNorth this year.  So - we're looking for input from you.  What did you like about last year?  What didn't you like?  Anybody you'd love to have speak at BobFest this year?  Let us know.  Leave a comment here or on our Facebook page, and we'lll see what we can do. 

Save The Date!

FightingBobFestNorth 2012 -- May 19, 2012.  Watch this space for further announcements.  Another exciting possibility - a Netroots Wisconsin workshop day on May 20 - come to Chippewa Falls for a day of speeches and a day of workshops!

Chippewa Falls Newspaper covers FightingBobFestNorth 2011

Still, the crowd at the Northern Wisconsin State Fair grounds in Chippewa Falls was not taking it sitting down. They brought the energy of recent political protests in Madison and recall petition drives with them.

If there were a theme for this Fighting BobFest, it would be the ongoing battle of the common people, as the progressives see them, against the interests of corporations and the wealthy.

Speaker after speaker, and display table after display table, touched on some element of the issue.

What a great day it was!

I'm finally recovered from FightingBobFestNorth -It was a great day.  We'll be bringing you some video from the event, as well as some pictures over the next few days.  This is the first video, of Tony Schultz, activist and farmer in Wisconsin.  He's speaking about progressivism and agriculture here.

In Madison? Coming to Bobfest? Jump into the pool!

There's a carpool coming up from Madison.  My lovely radio cohost Carol has set this up, and is looking for Madisonians who want to pool resources to come to Chippewa Falls.  Details at

Questions --- we get Questions!

There've been quite a few questions coming in on the Facebook page, and via email - I'm going to try to answer some of them here -

Will Bobfest happen if it rains? -- Yes, this is a rain or shine event.  Most of it may have to move indoors if it rains hard, but we've got a contingency plan for that.  But outside would be roomier and more fun.

Is the venue handicapped accessible? - Yes --- the entire grounds is accessible to everyone.  You should be able to get in to everything and the site is pretty darn flat.  If you need help with something, just grab one of the volunteers.  We'll help you get around.

Is there Internet access on site?  - Nope, sorry to say, there is not (unless you have Internet access through your cell phone). 

Will the event be live-streamed?  - No it won't -- Mostly because there is no Interent access.  There will probably be some limited live streaming on Uppity Wisconsin, and probably there will be some live audio on the Cinchcast widget on Solidarity Wisconsin.  We will be videotaping during the day, and you can look for some of that video here a few weeks after the event.  Also look for some updates on various progressive blogs.

Will there be food? - Yup -- lots of good local Wisconsin food and good local Wisconsin beer.

Water? - There will be water available in coolers.  You might want to bring a water bottle for convenience.  Some of the food vendors will be selling bottled water, but we know that a lot of you don't want to go that way, and we're trying to make it easy for you.

Breakout Sessions?  - There will be multiple breakout sessions.  The way they work will vary a little based on how the organizers see them.  Look for informative speakers and a lot of great discussion.

Can you tell me exactly when the speakers will be on? - Not really.  It's a fairly free-form event.  We'll make an attempt to keep things moving along, but it's a little hard to have a firm timetable.  We promise to make room for lunch, the breakouts, and some partying down, music, and beer. 

We will have continuing updates on anything you will need to know both here and on the Facebook page.

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