Thousands descended on music festivals this weekend with Parachute and Ragamuffin each attracting crowds of around 20,000.

Around 1000 family groups took up Parachute's "pay what you can" deal. Organiser and founder Mark de Jong said people had paid from $1 up to $250, with some even voluntarily paying the full $465 family rate for the Waikato show.

"It's a great vibe, we've got a full range of ages and everyone's having fun," de Jong said. "The main stage was packed for [pop band] Avalanche City last night."

Rasta-inspired Ragamuffin, in Rotorua, was headlined by UB40 lead singer Ali Campbell.


"It's a big success. I would say it's the success story of the summer music festivals," said spokeswoman Sandra Roberts.

Tickets have nearly sold out for the St Jerome's Laneways Festival, being held at Silo Park on the Auckland waterfront tomorrow.