Fort Bragg’s Rock Beyond Belief passed quietly last Saturday. While organizers had predicted a crowd of 5,000, Richard Dawkins, the main draw of the event whose “sell out” crowds were the justification for the attendance forecast, ultimately spoke to only “a couple hundred” spectators. Photos of the event show Aiden, the musical act originally billed as Dawkins’ lead-in, playing to only a few dozen who had stuck out the day. It also appeared the military base was hosting a largely civilian crowd.
Rain early in the day may have affected attendance, much as the heat affected the Christian Rock the Fort the atheist event was meant to protest. Rock the Fort reportedly drew 3,000 to 4,000 of the forecast 10,000 (and the atheists had been quick to mock the attendance numbers of the Billy Graham Evangelical Association event).