Arts, Beats & Eats gearing up for 25th anniversary of festival this year

Maureen Feighan
The Detroit News

Soaring Eagle Arts, Beats & Eats, a Labor Day tradition in Metro Detroit for thousands, is gearing up for a big anniversary this year — its 25th.

The popular four-day festival returns Sept. 2-5 to downtown Royal Oak and Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort has signed a multi-year deal to continue as the festival's title sponsor. Flagstar Bank also has signed on to continue to be the presenting sponsor through 2025.

“It has been a rewarding experience to be a part of Arts, Beats & Eats, one of the Midwest’s largest and most successful festivals that brings incredible art, outstanding music and a mouthwatering array of food to downtown Royal Oak,” said Raul Venegas, executive director of marketing and entertainment & sales for Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort in a press release.

Hundreds of people attend the Soaring Eagle Arts, Beats & Eats on Saturday, September 4, 2021 in Royal Oak.

This year's festival will again include multiple stages with a variety of big name performers, dozens of food vendors and a full art show. The music lineup will be announced in late July. Jim Beam will be the title sponsor of the festival's national music stage this year.

“What a great 25th anniversary present and validation to have these partners extend their roles at the festival,” said Jon Witz, Arts, Beats & Eats producer. “Not only do we get critical funding to continue the festival at a high level, but Soaring Eagle, Flagstar and Jim Beam’s commitments will lead not only to a great event in 2022, but for years to come.” 

Violinist Candice Smith, Pretty Stringz, played a set on the performance pit stage at last year's Soaring Eagle Arts, Beats and Eats in Royal Oak.

And for families with children on the autism spectrum, Soaring Eagle Arts, Beats & Eats also will open one hour early each day to give them free private access to the festival's carnival with less crowds. Families must register in advance at

More than 365,000 people attended last year's festival, generating nearly $400,000 to donate to local charities. Since the event began in 1998, more than $6 million has been raised by the festival for community and charitable groups.