Recovery festival hopes to empower those impacted by addiction in Michiana

NOW: Recovery festival hopes to empower those impacted by addiction in Michiana


MISHAWAKA, Ind. -- Plans are underway for the first ever Recover Michiana Festival. 

Its goal is to advocate for people battling with addiction, either personally or through a loved one, by bringing awareness and resources together.  

“This epidemic is large and its growing,” said Recover Michiana organizer Alicia Brown. “This is an opportunity for us to get together and shatter that stigma of what addiction looks like, celebrate what recovery looks like, as well as honor lives that have been lost.” 

Musicians and artists will provide entertainment throughout the day while addiction experts will have booths set up throughout the venue to educate attendees on how to get help or learn about what is being done on a local level to end the crisis. 

Brown says the idea for a recovery festival started after the South Bend Common Council rejected a proposal for a sober living home on the city’s southside in March. 

“If this festival saves one life, than I think that would be worth it,” said Recover Michiana organizer Sonny Cruz.

Long term, organizers want to break addiction’s stigma, provide more access to treatment, and improve the rates of overcoming addiction. 

“This is an opportunity to come out and support those that are fighting this battle, that continue to fight this battle, as well as provide support for family members of loved ones that have succumbed to their addiction,” said Brown. “This is a place where you’re going to get to come and get an education as well as support, love, [and] encouragement.” 

The free festival is Sunday, September 15 from Noon to 4 p.m. at Battell Park in Mishawaka. 

“When you share your story, when you share your truth, it seems to open up,” said Cruz. “More people deal with what you’re going through than you think. Addiction isolates you. It puts you in a corner that says you’re just completely alone in this world and when you open with your story, you’re not alone. Someone else can identify with your story and that’s where the healing is.” 

Right now, organizers are looking for vendors and sponsors to be apart of the event. 

Brittany Lee Moffitt is a Mishawaka vocalist and recovering alcoholic performing at Recover Michiana. She hopes her songs about addiction inspires others to recover out loud. 

“Music and singing has always been some way for me to have therapy and let out what I’m feeling,” said Moffitt. “One thing that really helped me on my recovery journey was to know that there was a fellowship that existed, there were other people who were on this journey. I’m not alone and anyone who is suffering, they’re not alone.” 

To donate or become a sponsor or vendor, click here.

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