SECAUCUS, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A celebration of all things Beatles-related was taking place this weekend in Secaucus, N.J.

As WCBS 880’s Tom Kaminski reports, there are Beatles fans, and there are really big Beatles fans, and then there is Mark Lapidos.

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In 1974, he decided to get together in New York City with some fellow fans and celebrate the music of the Beatles, who at that point were all alive and had been disbanded for only four years.

It didn’t hurt that Lapidos won the personal blessing of John Lennon, who told Lapidos: “I’m all for it. I’m a Beatles fan too.”

Thirty-nine years later, the festival draws thousands of fans who take over the Empire Meadowlands Hotel in Secaucus through Sunday.

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Headliners for this year include Peter Noone of the 1960s British Invasion band Herman’s Hermits; fellow British Invasion pop star Billy J. Kramer; former Beatles recording engineer Ken Scott; horn player Tom Scott, who worked with Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr; and Mark Hudson, who worked as Starr’s producer for 10 years.

The festival also includes a huge Beatles marketplace, vendors from all over the world, soundalike contest, panel discussions, and special guests. But mostly, just in 1974, the music is what makes people come together.

The Fest for Beatles Fans will also hold a convention outside Chicago in August.

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