With all the focus on Woodstock’s 40th anniversary, you might think that those three days at Yasgur’s Farm constituted the biggest rock festival in history.

You’d be wrong. Not even close. In fact, it’s not even the most heavily attended in upstate New York.

On July 28, 1973, The Summer Jam drew an estimated 600,000 rock fans to the Watkins Glen Grand Prix Raceway outside Watkins Glen, to see the Allman Brothers Band, the Grateful Dead and The Band perform, earning the festival a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for (at the time) “Largest audience at a pop festival”.

This Saturday, former co-owner of the Rainforest Preserve, Tom Morreale, will try to recreate that festival when he presents Tripfest 3 at the Jewish Community Center of Utica, 2310 Oneida St.

Tripfest was started two years ago to honor Tom’s brother, Vinnie Morreale, who in addition to co-owning the Rainforest Preserve on Genesee Street for 11 years, was also the owner of Captain Trips Place in 1990 and Captain Trips 2 in 1992.

Given Vinnie’s musical tastes, the Watkins Glen tribute is a natural. The show will feature three bands playing the roles of the three Watkins Glen bands. Opening the show at 6 p.m. will be the very popular Our Common Roots playing a set of Grateful Dead tunes. Members of well-known Band aficionados the Crazy Fools will be joined by special guests as they follow with a set by Levon and the boys. Finally, closing the show will be the ultimate Allman Brothers tribute band, Les Brers.

Whether for love of the music or for the chance to pay tribute to a major force in local music history, agreeing to play this show was an easy choice for the musicians.

“Vinnie gave us our first gig,” recalls Les Brers founder Dan Sisti. “He took a chance on us when no one else would.”

“We love the music and history of The Band, especially the stories and lore of their time living in Woodstock,” says Crazy Fools bassist Sean Gaffney. “Aside from that, an opportunity to be a part of a Watkins Glen Summer Jam tribute show has been something we hoped for and talked about for years.”

Beer, wine, and food from Doughboy’s BBQ will be available, in addition to an auction and free Captain Trips treasures from his stores. Partial proceeds will go to Stevens-Swan Humane Society. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door.

Mark Sisti is an experienced performer that writes about local music for the Observer-Dispatch. Email him at msist1@roadrunner.com.