In the push and pull between the Upper Midwest’s two major country music festivals, the straightaway-named Country Fest in Cadott, Wis., may have gotten the upper hand on its competitor We Fest with its newly announced 2016 lineup.
Kenny Chesney, Sam Hunt, Carrie Underwood and Dierks Bentley will each headline one night in the four-day tent-and-twang camp-out, scheduled June 16-19 at the Cadott festival grounds 30 miles northeast of Eau Claire (about two hours from the Twin Cities). Kip Moore, Chase Rice, Maddie & Tae, Jerrod Niemann, Randy Houser, Neal McCoy, Frankie Ballard and Phil Vassar are also all scheduled to perform. Click here for Country Fest 2016’s day-by-day schedule.
General admission passes are on sale now for $77.50 for a single day or $155 for all four days. Reserved seats and VIP packages are also available. A sign of the event's growing popularity, its top-tier VIP Gold passes are already sold out.
Of course, We Fest is still nothing to shake your mud-caked cowboy boots at. Its 2016 lineup includes Eric Church, Tim McGraw, Kid Rock, Lee Brice, Billy Currington, Gary Allan and Joe Nichols. Meanwhile, both Bentley and Houser are on the lineup along with Travis Tritt for the Moondance Jammin' Country Fest near Walker, Minn., held the same weekend as Cadott's country fest.
About the only big-name male country singers not on either lineup is Luke Bryan (coming to the new Vikings stadium on Aug. 19) and Keith Urban (coming to Target Center on Nov. 5). Chesney’s booking at Country Fest suggests he might break from tradition and not perform at Target Field this summer, but we'll see.