Howard County Police said attendance Oct. 6 was down significantly from last year’s 50,000 estimate for the show featuring Jack White, ZZ Top, Skrillex, Nas, Alabama Shakes, Ben Folds Five and others.
But organizers, including promoter I.M.P., Virgin Mobile and major sponsor LG, dispute the 32,000 figure reported by the Baltimore Sun, saying the 50,000-ticket allotment went clean and ticketholders were fully in attendance.
They added the higher number is born out by the record-breaking amount of money concertgoers contributed to the projects at the heart of the FreeFest.
More than $250,000 was raised for Virgin Mobile’s Re*Generation initiative, an amount estimated to keep the Re*Gen shelter in Washington, D.C., which opens later this fall, running for two years, according to a statement.
As in past years, Virgin Group Chairman Richard Branson was a ubiquitous presence in the crowd and on the roof of the Pavilion, greeting fans and guest bartending for the charity project.