Rock Hard Festival is a heavy metal festival organized and sponsored by the Rock Hard magazine. It is held annually in Gelsenkirchen, Germany since 2003. The 2003 festival was also initially planned for the 20th anniversary of the magazine as a single event. But the fans voted it as the best metal open-air in Germany and so they continued. The festival is still held at the amphitheater which is located directly at the Rhein-Herne-Kanal in the Nordsternpark in Gelsenkirchen. The amphitheater has a maximum capacity of 7,000 people.