The past few years have been a little rough for the Insane Clown Posse and the whole Juggalo Nation, with the FBI classifying Juggalos as a criminal street gang and Violent J’s daughter getting conned by second-rate fur-suit manufacturers, but now it’s time to put all of those worries in a Faygo bottle and chuck it as far as possible. That’s because we’re rapidly approaching the happiest/weirdest/actually, let’s just stick with weirdest weekend of the year: The Gathering Of The Juggalos. This year’s even will be even more special than normal, as ICP is celebrating the 20th annual get-together for Juggalos and other clown-themed people with what it’s calling the “Soopa Gathering.”
Obviously, with a name like that, things have to be pretty “soopa,” and—as is usually the case for this weird thing—the lineup of musical acts, comedians, and wild side is as baffling as ever. There’s hardcore Juggalo-type horrorcore stuff Mushroomhead, $uicideBoy$, Butcher Babies, GFM, Ouija Macc, Twisted Insane, and Anybody Killa, as well as groups you may have actually heard of like Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, C&C Music Factory, KRS-One, Geto Boys, and Morris Day & The Time (almost certainly because Jay and Silent Bob are fans). The Gathering will also feature some groups known for elaborate suits instead of elaborate makeup, including Transformers-themed cover band Cybertronic Spree, fast food-themed parody band Mac Sabbath, and GWAR (which should just have its own ridiculous festival at this point).
It’s not all about music, though, as there will be an appearance from Gilbert Gottfried and Randy from Trailer Park Boys, as well as a Juggalo yacht club wine mixer, a “lingerie contest,” and a “games pavilion” (for any indoor kids spending a long weekend at a music festival).
This year’s Gathering will be held from July 31 to August 3 in Springville, Indiana, but reading about this stuff from us is not the best way to learn about the Gathering. That, as always, is what the annual infomercial is for, and this year’s is just as dumb-in-a-good(?)-way as ever, with Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J playing Super Ninja and Captain Juggalo, a pair of superheroes who save Juggalos from having a bad time by… murdering their bosses, prison guards, and creepy adult bullies. It’s not a great approach for a group that tried to fight the government so its fans wouldn’t be classified as violent gang members, but it’s all so cartoony that there’s no point in trying to examine it too closely. Either way, it’s nice to see that whoever puts these things together every year is still a master at walking the fine line between “trying too hard” and “not trying at all.”