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Country Thunder, lightning and rain

Top-shelf talent on tap for weekend
Like other spots around the metroplex yesterday, Country Thunder USA fell victim to heavy rains and winds. Despite the inclement weather, the concert series rolls on although today’s schedule has been changed.
“So far everything has run very smooth,” said Michelle Romeo of Country Thunder before the rain started pouring down yesterday. “Let’s just hope it stays that way.”
The national music festival planned to showcase eight artists on the main stage Thursday., but nature changed the schedule slightly and Kevin Fowler and Phil Vassar were unable to perform due to the weather. The event’s two side stages remained closed as well. Headliners Gretchen Wilson and Big & Rich did perform their sets as scheduled.
The festivities began at 2 p.m. as Western Underground took the stage under sunny skies; however, many festival patrons were still setting up for the four-day event or had not yet arrived at the 300-acre site. Country Thunder representatives said they expect to see approximately 100,000 people during the Memorial Day Weekend, but, they said, there is always a question mark looming when it comes to holding events outdoors in Texas.
Country Thunder owner Larry Barr reported that 12,000 people attended the event on Thursday.
Some might look at the first day as just a warm-up for the influx of patrons expected on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Bomshel, Lantana, Corb Lund and Chris Young were slated to lead off the lineup on the mainstage today, but those performances were canceled by event organizers. Gates at the event will not open until 3 p.m. today.
Trick Pony wll be the first band to perform today, and is scheduled to take the stage around 4 p.m. They will be followed by John Anderson, Neal McCoy, Randy Rogers Band and a closing performance by Pat Green.
Saturday’s music begins at 11:30, giving everyone a chance to divide their time between the National Polka Festival and country music, with 32 Below, Stoney LaRue, PovertyNeck Hillbillies, Jamie Lee Thurston, Heartland, Lorrie Morgan, Sawyer Brown, Reba McEntire and Cross Canadian Ragweed on the main stage. Starting at 5 p.m., 32 Below, Stoney LaRue and PovertyNeck Hillbillies will be playing their set again at the Graham Central Station Stage, along with Johnny Cooper, Corb Lund and Harry Luge. The Wolf Stage will feature Sunny Sweeney at 4 p.m. and Darren Kozelsky, Brandon Rhyder and Zona Jones will follow.
The final day’s events on Sunday end with probably the biggest name in country music: George Strait. Before he takes the stage at 9:30 p.m., those in attendance will have the opportunity to hear Johnny Cooper, Rio Grand, Jason Boland & the Stragglers, Steve Holy, Ronnie Milsap, Charlie Daniels Band and Montgomery Gentry. The music begins at noon. 32 Below, Rio Grand, Jason Boland & the Stragglers, PovertyNeck Hillbillies and Harry Luge will be featured on the Graham Central Station stage starting at 4:30 p.m.
Wolf Stage has Todd Fritsch, Aaron Watson, Sonny Burgess and Greg Alan starting at 4 p.m.
In addition to the music, Country Thunder USA is providing games for kids, a “songwriters campfire” program and a 60-foot bungee jump attraction.
For more information, including a map of Thunder Ridge Ranch, pick up a copy of the Ennis Daily News’ special Country Thunder USA supplement at the publication’s offices at 213 N. Dallas St.

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Posted by on May 25 2007. Filed under Editorials. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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