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Overland Park teen holds mental health-focused music festival

You matter festival creator
Posted at 8:46 AM, Aug 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-06 09:46:14-04

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — An Overland Park native is channeling his love for music and personal experience with mental health into a musical festival called the “You Matter Festival."

This is the fifth year of the festival, which was started by Will Gurley.

Gurley is open about his struggles with depression and anxiety. A few years ago, he was watching the Grammy Awards and saw Logic perform his hit song “1-800-273-8255." That number is the former suicide prevention lifeline number. It sparked an idea for Gurley to create a platform where people can share their love for music, while discussing mental health.

"I knew I had to use my music and my gifts that I have been given by God to share this message of hope: that you matter within the Johnson County community,” Gurley said.

There will be four bands performing, along with Gurley’s. Guest speakers and mental health resource tables will also be present.

The founder says he hopes a festival like this can change someone’s life for the better.

“The music was always there for me and to be kind of an outlet to process through things and I would write whatever I was going through or play music whenever I was feeling upset, anxious or anything. It's helped me for years and years and still helps me,” he said.

The event is free to attend. It starts at 6 p.m. at the Shawnee Mission South Football Field.

KSHB 41 News Reporter Jordan Betts will be emceeing the event.