Mayday Music Festival comes back to Yaphank in May


Nationally recognized acts and local favorites will take the stage at the Mayday Music Festival in Yaphank’s Southaven County Park on May 14.

Top-tier acts slated to appear include Spin Doctors, Deer Tick, Crash Test Dummies, Sahara Moon, The Smithereens with Marshall Crenshaw, and Dave Hause & The Mermaid.

Local performers Cassandra House, The Dirty Vice Band, Melanie Morin, Pete Mancini and the Hillside Airmen, Pretty Vacant, the Famous Dr. Scanlon Band and Soundswell round out the event’s lineup.

From noon to 10 p.m., Long Islanders can enjoy a full-blown music festival, complete with food and good times. It’s an experience longed for since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The first Mayday Festival occurred in 2019. Similar local events including The Great South Bay Music Festival and Bradstock have also been on hiatus since their 2019 runs.

“We’re super psyched, we are itching to get back out there,” said Keenan Boyle, the bassist with Soundswell. “This being the first festival to happen in the area in years, it’s going to do really well. Demand is extra high. I guess we starved them this whole time and we’re ready to deliver.”

A fan himself, Boyle said he is excited to see Spin Doctors and his fellow local acts hit the stage.

While Soundswell performed live throughout 2021, this May marks their return to festival performances.

“It felt like a revival of community that’s been sleeping or dormant,” Boyle said of Soundswell’s first festival performance since the pandemic.

Working class heroes

The Suffolk Association of Municipal Employees, the largest independent labor union in the state, hosts the Mayday Festival in the spirit of lyrical activists like Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger and modern rock acts who champion working class heroes, according to the festival’s webpage.

The union hopes to raise awareness of the issues facing working people today and promote solidarity across labor unions and all people who work to provide for their families.

Tickets to the festival are $49.99. You can click here to purchase them.

The nonprofit event is open to the general public, with all net proceeds going to fund charitable causes, such as scholarships for union members and their families, Long Island Cares: The Harry Chapin Food Bank and promoting union organizing and activism.

Top photo: Soundswell performing at the Great South Bay Music Festival in 2017, photo taken by Bill Graham, Soundswell/Facebook.