By Ryan Gueningsman
WINSTED, MN Brad Paisley’s Winstock debut, a newly-designed mobile app, and additional camping are just three of the many things in store for this year’s Winstock Country Music Festival, set for this weekend in Winsted at the festival grounds.
Joining Paisley at the 23rd annual two-day country music and camping festival will be Lee Brice, Thomas Rhett, Big & Rich with Cowboy Troy, Tyler Farr, Parmalee, A Thousand Horses, Clare Dunn, Dylan Scott, Leah Turner, The Last Bandoleros, Maiden Dixie, Mitch Gordon and the Unleaded Band, Roadhouse 6, and 2 Mile Final.
“Brad Paisley has been on our list for a number of years to have perform at Winstock,” said Winstock Country Music Festival Chairman Dave Danielson.
The 21 number-one hits Paisley will bring to the Winstock stage for the first time, plus his 14 Country Music Association awards (including a win as Entertainer of the Year), and the 14 Academy of Country Music awards, provide evidence that he has figured out how to connect in a big way with both the public and the country music business.
In addition to Paisley’s Winstock debut, Danielson said Thomas Rhett is also an artist that’s not to be missed.
“He’s one of the biggest acts out there right now,” he said. “Not only in country music, but in multiple genres. His fan base is huge and we’re excited to welcome him to Winstock.”
Another favorite of Danielson’s is Big & Rich with Cowboy Troy.
“Those guys know how to bring a good time to the stage,” he said. “Big & Rich, followed by Thomas Rhett, and then Brad Paisley closing out the show, is going to make for a very fun night.”
For complete biographies on the bands signed to perform at Winstock ‘16, follow the “lineup” link from www.winstockfestival.com.
In order to keep fans up-to-date on the schedule, promotions, and other Winstock-related news or announcements at the event, organizers have redeveloped the Winstock mobile app, which is available for the first time on both Android and Apple devices.
“Keeping in touch with our fans throughout the event is a huge part of our planning,” Danielson said. “This is one more way we can communicate with them.”
The app is the official source for Winstock news and updates. You can receive the information and updates via mobile notifications by downloading the Winstock app on your mobile device.
Also in 2016, additional camping opportunities have been added for Winstock fans.
New Campgrounds F/G have been added on land west of Cable Avenue, across from Campground C. This change is due to Winstock losing its lease on the Campground E land when the City of Winsted purchased it for future development. Campground E guests received letters last year explaining the change and how to renew campsites in other campgrounds. Buses will be running every half hour from campgrounds C, D, F, and G to the main concert area.
“We’ve sold out of camping the last few years, so with the added sites this year, we’ll be able to accommodate more of our fans,” Danielson said. “As always, we can’t thank enough the folks who have volunteered at and continue to attend Winstock year after year. We’re looking forward to putting on another top-notch country music event to kick off their summers right.”
Winstock ‘16 specifics
• Tickets remain available to Winstock and may be purchased online at shop.winstockfestival.com, by calling (320) 485-4287, or at the gates. General admission ($130) and a limited number of reserved seats ($165) are available. VIP is sold out. A limited number of camping sites are still available and may be purchased for $110 for the weekend.
• The 17th annual Winsted Fire Department spaghetti dinner will be served on the Winstock grounds Thursday, June 9 from 4-9 p.m. at the Winstock food tent. Cost is $8 for adults and $6 for children.
• Decorate campsites according to the Brad Paisley hit “Country Nation” for the annual campsite decorating contest. Organizers want fans to show off their roots and favorite school or hometown. New in 2016, there is going to be one grand prize only, sponsored by Midwest Machinery, and it will be awarded to the overall best-decorated campsite based on this year’s theme.
• The sixth-annual Winstock beanbag tournament will take place Thursday, June 9 at the festival grounds, beginning at 6:30 p.m. This year, there will be four brackets. Register onsite Thursday, June 9 beginning at 5 p.m. inside the festival grounds. No pre-registration accepted.
• A limited number of tickets are left for the Winstock ‘16 raffle, where participants have the opportunity to win $15,000 cash. For more information, call Dick Langenfeld at (320) 485-4208. At Winstock, visit the pull tab booth to inquire about raffle ticket availability.
• Fans are encouraged to be in the concert area to honor America each day before the concerts begin. Kim Pickar will sing the national anthem Friday at approximately 4:20 p.m. Rebecca and Melissa Moy will sing the national anthem Saturday at approximately 12:20 p.m. The national anthem will be sung from the main stage while members of the Minnesota National Guard’s Military Funeral Honors Program present the colors.
• For additional artist announcements, promotions, sponsor and ticket information, and everything Winstock, visit www.winstockfestival.com, sign up for the Winstock E-mail news, follow the festival on Twitter @WinstockMN, and like Winstock on Facebook. New in 2016, Winstock is also on Instagram and Snapchat.