featuring Blanca a high-energy, powerhouse vocalist and Austin French catchy hooks and Spirit-filled lyrics with I Am They pop worship band headlining

Coming August 28th, 2021

Gates open from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm | Day of Compassion from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm

Come celebrate our 20th anniversary!

We strive to provide one of the best, free community events in our area. In addition to providing a fun event, we aim to meet real tangible needs. Through our various partnerships, we are all to provide various health education and resources, haircuts, veterans’ services, clothing, backpacks, school supplies and groceries—at no cost to our guests.

Fireworks

Our fireworks show will begin around dusk, which will be about 8:45 p.m., and the sky will light up on the north side of Highway 14 directly across from our property.

Day of Compassion

Come experience a professional haircut, grab a free backpack full of school supplies, find some new threads, explore essential health education and services, and receive free groceries and produce.

Concerts

Our concert stage features chart-topping and award-winning artists such as Blanca, Austin French, and I Am They. No tickets are necessary, and all concerts are completely free.

SPONSORS

Freedom Fest remains completely free to the community thanks to the partnership and generosity of our sponsors.

SCHEDULE

Please note these times are subject to change.

Gates Open

Gates open at 10:00 am and on-site parking is available on a first-come-first-served basis. All our compassion components will open at this time, as well.

Day of Compassion

Our Day of Compassion operates from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, or while supplies last.

Grocery Giveaway

We are giving away over 25,000 pounds of groceries and fresh produce. Thanks to our partnership with Second Harvest and numerous sponsors, each family will receive a box of dry groceries as well as a bag of fresh produce.

Backpack Giveaway

We want to help bridge the education gap in our community by ensuring that each student has an opportunity to receive the supplies they need for a successful school year. We are giving away 500 backpacks, which will include school supplies such as pencils, crayons, erasers, folders, notebooks, scissors, glue, and more.

Clothing Giveaway

In partnership with Acts of Kindness, the Janesville Community Center, Rock County Cares, and other organizations, we are offering a giveaway of thousands of articles of clothing. We have men's, women's, girl's, boy's, and infant's clothing items—many of them are even brand new.

Haircuts

Our team of professional volunteers will be providing free, professional haircuts right at Freedom Fest. Book an appointment first thing to ensure there's a space reserved for you!

Blanca

Blanca is a powerhouse vocalist that brings so much depth and connection to her audience. All who have encountered Blanca know that this high-energy Latina is ALL Heart! The vulnerability and honesty that she carries on and off stage, through her music and through her words are what set her apart, making her quite a special artist. From songs on grief and loss, to honest stories of dealing with shame and abuse, it's no doubt that she will captivate the hearts of your audience. Her music, full of hope and truth, speaks to the soul. She is extremely passionate about pouring into women and girls, and has made it her mission to see people set FREE from shame, unworthiness and anything else that is discouraging them from being who they truly are in Christ!

Austin French

When he was an 18-year-old youth group kid, Austin French drew the short straw for his church’s youth-led Sunday service. He was prepared to play guitar and lead worship, something he was comfortable doing. Instead, he was assigned to deliver the message. Wracked with nerves, Austin searched the Bible to find something he could teach. He landed on Luke 7, the story of Jesus interrupting a funeral. The story is significant because for spiritual teachers of the day, participating in a funeral would make them ceremonially unclean. When Jesus saw a funeral procession going by, He ignored the custom, went and touched the coffin and said, “Arise.”

“It’s a parallel for our own lives,” Austin shares. “We are all dead in our sin, without a hope or a savior. Jesus says to us, get up, wake up sleeper.”

Austin’s newest project, Wake Up Sleeper, is inspired by that early sermon, a reminder that Jesus is ever present in whatever situation we might be facing. With catchy hooks and impassioned, Spirit-fueled lyrics, Austin hopes to inspire those who may have become disillusioned with Christianity or perhaps have left the faith altogether, something he’s all too familiar with himself.

“I grew up in church, was surrounded by church culture, but I hated Christians for a long time,” Austin says. “Our family was the family that pretended to be perfect on Sunday but was falling apart behind closed doors. As an eight-year-old boy, I was living two different lives, expected to be perfect on Sunday and then living in fear at home.”

It was at a church music camp at the age of 13 where Austin’s life was changed forever. He went to camp to learn to play guitar, hoping to impress girls. Instead, Austin heard this message from one of the camp leaders: Don’t judge Jesus on the broken people He came to save. The words described his life perfectly. He’d been judging Jesus for his own family’s brokenness, being hardened by the people around him whose faith was anything but authentic. Austin made the decision there at camp to not only commit to music, but to follow Jesus with his whole life. “I knew I wanted music to be a part of my life, but I also knew I wasn’t going to do it to get girls. I wanted to write music for broken people.”

He’s stayed true to that first conviction, writing songs filled with a joyful energy that calls all people, believers and unbelievers alike, to open their hearts to God’s amazing grace. Title track “Wake Up Sleeper” challenges listeners to be fully alive with Jesus. Drawing on the sermon he delivered as a teenager, the song speaks directly to anyone sleepwalking through life. There’s a rich sincerity in his voice, a lived-out testimony, as he sings wake up sleeper / come to the light / Christ is alive / death don’t live here anymore.

“Rest for Your Soul,” is a song written from a place of personal exhaustion. Dad to three kids ages five and under, rest is hard to come by on a good day. Every available moment is filled with the constant needs of his young children. While wrestling with bone-deep weariness, Austin came across Matthew 11:28, “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.” He wrote “Rest for Your Soul,” trusting that his heavy burdens weren’t meant to be carried alone.

“All of us can find our spot in that, needing rest,” Austin says. “But He says, come to me and I will give you rest. We don’t have to wonder if it will happen, because it’s something He’s said He will do.”

“Jesus Can,” a vibey story song about his growing up years, is Austin at his most vulnerable and most redeemed. Writing the song brought up so much pain (and ultimately healing) from his past, he decided to expand the idea into a book. “I’m an artist whose life has been radically saved through a very desperate situation,” Austin says. “That’s the goal of the book and this song, to share my history and my story. When you think you can’t make it out, Jesus can make a way.”

One of the brighter spots on the project is a cover of “Ooh Child,” originally recorded by The Five Stairsteps. The recording came about in response to the 2020 pandemic. Austin was on tour with Winter Jam, a dream since he was a boy, when everything began shutting down due to COVID-19. Things were so uncertain, and Austin was overwhelmed with worry about what was going to happen to his family and his career. “When I listened to this song,” he says, “it brought back joy. I knew my circumstances weren’t going to last forever, that I didn’t have to believe in fear. God was working all things together for my good. If that was true, this song was true. Things are gonna get easier, better, brighter. This isn’t the end.”

 It’s an apt addition to the project and fits perfectly into Austin’s primary message, a message that’s carried through on every track - lean on God through the hard times, let Him carry the heavy burdens, choose to be alive in Him. As much as Wake Up Sleeper is an autobiographical story of growing up and finding God, Austin hopes it’s also a legacy for his children, each song is a heart-filled encouragement that the best it yet to come.

I Am They

For pop worship band I AM THEY, believing in God’s faithfulness is an active exercise in trust. After years of member transition and internal uncertainty with how or even why to move forward, they are leaning on Hebrews 10:23 – “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who is promised is faithful.” The band – made up of Matt Hein (vocals, guitar), Abbie Parker, (vocals), Brandon Chase (vocals, guitar), Justin Shinn (keys) and Nicole Hickman (drums) – poured the challenges of the past, hope for the future and a newfound joy for the present into their third album, Faithful God. More than a collection of new songs, Faithful God is a look back and a look forward, a declaration of promises kept and promises yet to come. The album’s first single, aptly titled “Faithful God,” speaks to those familiar times of confusion, times when you aren’t sure what next step to take, but just as quickly confirms that beyond all hope, God hasn’t let go. The story isn’t over.

Fireworks

The fireworks show will begin around dusk, which will be about 8:45 p.m., and the sky will light up on the north side of Highway 14 directly across from our property. Whether you have seen our fireworks before or this will be your first time, you are certainly in for a treat. (Please know that 8:45 p.m. is an approximate time and may be adjusted at the discretion of our pyrotechnician.)

Food Vendors

Grab a bite to eat from one of our food vendors.

LOCATION

New Life Assembly of God
on the corner of Wright Rd and Hwy 14

Located by the New Life Cross

2416 N Wright Rd
Janesville, WI 53546
608-756-4175

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