The 2023 GonzoFest Schedule — The Festival’s Last Ever — Is Here

Apr 21, 2023 at 1:46 pm
Ron Whitehead at a past GonzoFest.
Ron Whitehead at a past GonzoFest. Photo by Nik Vechery

GonzoFest, a local festival that celebrates the life and legacy of Louisville-born author and journalist Hunter S. Thompson, recently shared its schedule for 2023 — which will also be its last. 

The festival will return for its tenth and final year on Friday, July 14, and Saturday, July 15, at High Horse Bar.

Tickets are $25 for both days, but the festival will only sell 400 tickets total.

A documentary crew will be filming and doing interviews throughout the festival.

LEO received a copy of the schedule in an email from GonzoFest co-founder and U.S. National Beat Poet Laureate Ron Whitehead earlier this week, though the festival has not yet published the schedule on social media.

In the email, Whitehead wrote, “Let's Kick Out the Fucking Jams One Last Time!!”

Here’s the schedule:


  • 12-1:30 p.m. — The 1996 Official Hunter S. Thompson Tribute Behind The Scenes Panel. Host:  Kent Fielding. Panelists: T.R. Johnson (Louisiana), Rebekah Reeves (Lexington), Deidre Scaggs (Lexington), Billy Hardison (Louisville), J.b. Wilson (Washington, D.C.), Ron Whitehead 
  • 1:30-2 p.m. — John Whiting (Texas) & Hunter's Vincent
  • 2-4 p.m. — THE HELL'S ANGELS LETTERS Panel. Host: Timothy Denevi (FREAK KINGDOM/Washington D.C.) Panelists: Margaret Ann Harrell (North Carolina), Peter Richardson (SAVAGE JOURNEY/California), William McKeen (OUTLAW JOURNALIST/Massachusetts), John Brick (Wisconsin), Ron Whitehead
  • 4-6 p.m. — Screening of “OUTLAW POET: The Legend of Ron Whitehead” by film producer Nick Storm, followed by brief Q&A with Ron Whitehead
  • 6 p.m. - 2 a.m. — Music and poetry, featuring Tommy Bays, Freddie Bourne, Hi Helens, DoorWay, Creeps, Inc., and Mythagoe


  • 12-7 p.m. — Poets, singers, and musicians. In order of appearance: Brent & Brennan Embry (Rosine), Raymond Smith (Bowling Green), Michael Duckwall (Indiana), Mick Parsons (Louisville), Tim Heerdink (Indiana), Hilton Airall (Louisville), J.b. Wilson (Washington, D.C.), Jean Kizer (Indiana), Dusty Jaggers (Louisville), James Dennis Casey IV (Illinois), Ian Uriel Girdley (Indiana), Merritt Waldon (Indiana), Joseph Fulkerson (Owensboro), Jonathan Baker (Indiana), Johnny Evans (Louisville), Tom Murphy (Texas), Frogg Corpse (Indiana), Kent Fielding (Alaska), Snow Matthews (Indiana), Lindsay Gargotto (Louisville), Mark Berriman (Indiana), Joan Hawkins (Indiana), Joe Kidd & Sheila Burke (Michigan), Dean McClain (Shelbyville), Tony Brewer (Indiana), Elizabeth Nelson (Louisville), Ron Whitehead & Aviv Naamani (Louisville), Tommy Twilite (Massachusetts), Tommy Bays (Indiana)
  • 7 p.m. - 2 a.m. — Bands and poets. In order of appearance: Blind Feline, John Burroughs (Ohio), Frank Messina (New Jersey) & The Storm Generation Band with special guests, ZU ZU YA YA, Mike Hood & Solar Flannel, Night Parade