News Flash: Phish Plan For Huge Summer Concert

It looks as if the tiny town of Limestone may once again become Maine's

largest city -- that is, if Phish fans flock to the burgh by the thousands

this August as they did last summer for the band's Great Went concert.

The improvisational group have confirmed that they will hold a successor to

the Great Went from Aug. 14-16 at Limestone's decommissioned Loring Air

Force Base (now the Loring Commerce Center), according to Jason Colton, a

representative for the band's Dionysian Productions management company.

The date and location for the still-unnamed concert mirror the precise time

and place of the Great Went -- perhaps in hopes of mirroring the success of

last year's event. By all accounts the Great Went came off with nary a

hitch, in the process pumping $25 million into the local economy.

"We were welcomed by the local community and the local businesses in a way

that we've never experienced," Phish manager John Paluska told Addicted To

Noise in the days following last year's concert. "The state police were

really wonderful to deal with and we had a minimum of problems, so we're

pretty encouraged by our experience this year."

Much of the Great Went's success was attributed to its remote location.

Limestone is situated at Maine's northern tip, more than 300 miles from the

state's largest municipality, Portland. "By moving it up in extreme

Northern Maine, we figured it would filter out a lot of the more casual

onlookers, and filter it down to the people committed to a full weekend

experience," Paluska said last year.

About 70,000 tickets -- which provided access to two nights of concerts --

were sold or given away for the Great Went, in addition to some individual

tickets that were sold for the second night only. In 1996, Phish drew

58,000 fans for each night of their Clifford Ball concert, which was held

in Plattsburgh, N.Y.

A name for the Great Went follow-up has yet to be chosen. "That's

something we're going to decide over the next couple of months," Colton

said Thursday. "The band has got lots of ideas."

Ticket information for this summer's concert will be announced well in

advance of the as-yet-undetermined spring sale-date, Colton said. Tickets

will be available both by mail order and through Ticketmaster. -- Chris Nelson [Thurs., Feb. 5, 1998, 9 a.m. PST]