Page Burkum and Jack Torrey will perform with the Cactus Blossoms at the inaugural Frebella Festival. / Star Tribune file

Page Burkum and Jack Torrey will perform with the Cactus Blossoms at the inaugural Frebella Festival. / Star Tribune file

With an eye for wellness and mental health similar to the popular HazelFest, some well-known Twin Cities musicians will band together for the inaugural Frebella Festival on Saturday, Sept. 22, in Victoria, Minn., benefitting and celebrating the locally reared eating-disorder foundation the Emily Program.

Haley (née Haley Bonar), the Cactus Blossoms, the White Iron Band, Lucy Michelle’s Little Fevers and We Are the Willows are all confirmed to perform at the new family-friendly festival, happening in Victoria’s Lions Park.

Early-bird tickets can be bought via for $25 through July 31 (then they go up to $35), as can $100 VIP tickets (which come with free food and drink). Kids 12 and under will get in free.

All proceeds from Frebella will benefit the nonprofit foundation for the Emily Program, launched in St. Paul in 1993. The Emily Program has grown to include help centers all around Minnesota and in three other states. They include the Anna Westin House in-patient care center in St. Paul’s St. Anthony Main neighborhood, named after the Chaska teen whose suicide was the impetus for 2015's national legislation.

Tom O’Neill, one of the co-organizers of Frebella Fest, said the event is an extension of an annual outing he and other high school classmates of Anna Westin have been holding in her honor for the past 18 years.

“We thought one of the best ways to honor her was to agree to stay friends and get together every year,” said O’Neill, pointing to Frebella as a similarly fun but meaningful get-together. “Not only do we want to raise money for this important cause, but we want to continue to erase any stigmas related to mental illness and eating disorders, and to tell the community know, ‘We’re all here for you.’”

Speaking of HazelFest, the celebration of sobriety and self-care is returning for its sixth year at the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation campus in Center City on Aug. 4. Performers this year include hip-hop hero Brother Ali, Red House Records-backed folk-rocker Chastity Brown, Davina & the Vagabonds as well as the aforementioned Cactus Blossoms. You really can never have too much Cactus Blossoms. Those tickets are on sale for $15 via

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