The festival was strongly opposed by local residents, who failed to prevent its occurrence despite attempts at litigation. Approximately 70,000 advance tickets were sold, but contemporary press estimates said that as many as 200,000 people attended. The festival was characterized by the widespread use and exchange of hard drugs. Local authorities chose not to intervene in the open drug use for fear of rioting.
Artists and bands appearing at the 1970 Goose Lake Festival were, in order:
Friday Aug 7th: The Mighty Quick; John Drake's Shakedown; SRC; the New York Rock & Roll Ensemble; the Flying Burrito Brothers; John Sebastian; the MC5; Chicago; Rod Stewart & the Faces; Ten Years After.
Saturday Aug 8th: Früt; the Third Power; Brownsville Station; the Litter; Teegarden & Van Winkle; the Stooges; Mountain.
Sunday Aug 9th: Suite Charity; Teegarden & Van Winkle; Mitch Ryder & Detroit; Bob Seger; the Frost; the Flock; Savage Grace; the James Gang; Jethro Tull.
Originally scheduled, and even appearing on posters & flyers, but not appearing: Savoy Brown; Joe Cocker; Alice Cooper; Ram.