BY Jennifer Pukenas
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (UTC/TheLoop)-Round up your plaid shirts and cowboy boots, because it’s country time in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
In less than two months it will be time for Riverbend, Chattanooga’s annual concert event. This weeklong event is always the buzz for the first half of the summer.
Over the past few weeks, the acts for Riverbend have been announced. Some of the main performers include country stars Miranda Lambert, Alan Jackson and Kellie Pickler. The other big name acts include Brian McKnight, Christian group Casting Crowns, and 70’s sensation, The Beach Boys. Riverbend has decided to go all out this year, as it is their 30th Anniversary.
Miranda Lambert is setting the record as the highest-paid act Riverbend has ever seen. Chip Baker, executive director of Friends of the Festival, the producer of Riverbend, said in an interview with the Chattanooga Times Free Press that he will not discuss how much Lambert will be paid.
“I’m not going to give you the number, but this is the biggest money we’ve put out there,” Baker said. “We booked her because it is our 30th anniversary.”
Big money, indeed. Although Baker would not discuss the disclosed amount, Lambert’s payroll finished in front of three of the biggest performers Riverbend has ever seen, including Kid Rock, Hank Williams Jr. and Sheryl Crow.
Many University of Tennessee at Chattanooga students staying here for the summer will be attending Riverbend for the first time. Megan Roberson, one of these students, is really looking forward to her first trip.
“I always hear other students talking about it, but I haven’t gotten to experience it yet,” Roberson said. “I can’t wait to be there and see all the hype for myself.” Click Here to Listen to Other Comments by Roberson
This year, Riverbend will begin on Friday, June 10th and last until June 18th. Riverbend draws in over 650,000 fans each year.
Charlie Christiansen, another UTC student, is upset about having to miss Riverbend this year for work.
“I’m gonna be at home in Memphis working,” Christiansen said. “All my friends are going to be there.” Click Here to Listen to the Rest of Christiansen’s Comment
Nick Friend, a Senior from New Orleans, says that he loves Riverbend and that the smallness of Riverbend’s atmosphere is what makes it so great and he wishes he could be in attendance.
But whether you are attending this year or not, Riverbend has made sure that their 30th anniversary will be an event to remember.