Announcing the return of popular “Bluegrass & BBQ Festival”

Silver Dollar City Rings the BBQ Bell in a Toe-Tapping Way!
Announcing the Return of Popular Bluegrass & BBQ Festival

The ringing of the BBQ bell will soon resound through the Ozark hills with the return of what is becoming one of the most popular of all the Silver Dollar City festivals: Bluegrass & BBQ! Now in its second season, the 2006 festival, which matches up America’s favorite pastimes of mountain music and outdoor cooking, offers an expanded lineup while adding an extra week to the event. This year’s festival kicks off May 13 and runs through June 4.

“When we set out to build this event, our guests were very clear they wanted a spring music festival, and research showed barbecue ranks just as high. Based upon our history of listening to our guests, we decided to put the two together,” said D.A. Callaway of Silver Dollar City Entertainment. Callaway added that after last year’s popularity, the quality and quantity bar was set even higher with expansions including more music, more barbecue and more days.

“With every instrument tuning up, there will be a grill firing up,” Callaway said. Although the statement isn’t a literal count, the House of BBQ has been moved to the largest presentation hall on the park, The Red Gold Heritage Hall. Barbecue choices will feature smoky Texas-style, sweet Kansas City favorites, Memphis dry rubs and Carolina vinegar-based sauces. Tasting begins on the Square with demonstration of pit-style cooking and hundreds of barbecue sauces from around the country to sample.

The expanded festival also features a who’s who of American Bluegrass, with 50 bands and more than 1,000 performances from award-winning artists to rising stars, at a time when bluegrass music is exploding in popularity.

“We are in a Golden Age in bluegrass where pioneers of the music are still out there headlining and a new generation of talent is expanding the boundaries.” said Dan Hays, the executive director of the Nashville-based International Bluegrass Music Association. With the quality and quantity of bluegrass bands featured, “Silver Dollar City is one of the most significant and vital presenters of live bluegrass music anywhere in the world,” Hays said.

Bluegrass legend and 11-time Grammy winner Ricky Skaggs performs in a special concert May 28, headlining a lineup of featured bluegrass performers including Entertainer of the Year* and Entertaining Group of the Year** Cherryholmes; Emerging Artists of the Year* and Instrumental Group of the Year** The Grascals, and 2006 Bluegrass Band Champions** Billie Renee and Cumberland Gap. National touring bluegrass favorites include NewFound Road, Pine Mountain Railroad, the Lewis Family and the Chapmans.

Young bluegrass artists from around the country compete for honors and cash prizes as the park hosts its annual Youth in Bluegrass Band Contest, May 27-28. “Many of our past Youth in Bluegrass winners are now national touring bands, so the contest is a great place to see the freshest new talent in bluegrass.” Callaway said.

“One of the things people like best about this festival is a chance to get barbecue pointers from the experts – ‘how to’ tips on smoking and grilling methods, and sauce recipes,” said Mark Momany, culinary expert for Silver Dollar City. To kick off the festival, nationally recognized barbecue experts and authors Karen Adler and Judith Fertig, who have co-authored 9 cookbooks as the BBQ Queens, will share grilling tips and recipes at Silver Dollar City on Saturday, May 13. “Everyone likes to put their own signature in their barbecue and we like to introduce people to new flavors, such as smoking meats using ground pecan shells, corncobs or fruitwoods such as apple or pear,” Adler said. “At Silver Dollar City, we’re saluting two traditions with deep America roots – bluegrass and barbecue.”

Each evening, the show Classic Country Nights is featured in Echo Hollow Amphitheatre, with a special guest bluegrass group each night. Silver Dollar City also features rides and attractions including the Grand Exposition, an all-new development with 10 family rides showcased in an expanded, two-acre area of the theme park; six festivals; a dozen restaurants and over 100 demonstrating craftsmen.

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