Big Ticket FestivalAlex Elliot (left) along with staff members Randy Duncan, Ryan Peterson, and Meg Hewitt share excitement back stage.

The Big Ticket Festival is an annual outdoor Christian musical festival in northern Michigan.

Concordia University Ann Arbor served as the premiere sponsor for the Big Ticket Festival, July 9-11, 2021 in Gaylord, Michigan.

Staff and students from CUAA hosted a tent for conversations and prayers with attendees and academic information. Concordia also had spaces for volleyball and cornhole tournaments, who’s winners received Amazon gift cards, special event seating passes, and Concordia apparel.

“Music is an incredible gift. It was amazing to spend the weekend with so many believers in Jesus, hearing great music and sharing some of the ways God is at work on our campus at Concordia,” said Rev. Dr. Ryan Peterson, who attended the event with his wife, Kristy, and four children.

Alex Elliott shares faith story on stage

Concordia banners surrounded the performance stages and CUAA student Alex Elliott (’23) was able to share her testimony of God’s faithfulness when her dad passed away in April 2021 due to complications from COVID-19.

“I had the chance to talk about my dad’s death and how through that time, staff, other students, and all the Concordia family cared for me and were living uncommon,” said Elliott. “All in all, the weekend at Big Ticket Festival was amazing and I just loved being there.”

Elliott noted that it was a huge milestone for her to be able to openly share about her dad in front of thousands of people. Her experience reminded her just how much her Concordia family loves her and how loved she is by her Father in heaven.

The Big Ticket’s mission

The music festival is a multi-day, faith-based music festival normally held each summer in Gaylord, Michigan.

Their mission is to “gather the tribes and give glory to God;” through bringing family and friends together in celebration of God the Father, the Son, and Spirit. We believe that genuine celebration of God leads to awakened souls and changed hearts.

Do you want to know more?

Click here to learn more about Concordia University Ann ArborClick here to learn more about the next year’s Big Ticket Festival, July 7-10 in Gaylord, Michigan.

— Rachel Thoms served on Concordia University's Strategic Communications team from 2015-2022. Any inquiries about this story can be sent to

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