Raleigh, N.C. — The Wide Open Bluegrass festival, which relocated to Raleigh from Nashville last year, will remain in the Capital City through 2018, organizers announced Tuesday.
An initial list of performers was also announced, including Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder with Bruce Hornsby, Del McCoury Band, Hot Rize and Gibson Brothers.
The Whole Hog Barbecue Championship will be included as part of the festival. The N.C. Pork Council will also have samples of barbecue from the western, Triad and eastern parts of the state.
The festival, organized by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA), will take place September 30 – October 4.
Last year’s festival brought over 154,000 attendees and generated $10 million in revenue, according to the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau.
“The immense success of moving IBMA’s World of Bluegrass events to Raleigh last year had a huge impact on raising the profile of bluegrass music and the IBMA as an organization,” said Nancy Cardwell, IBMA executive director. “We continue to receive compliments about last year’s events, we’ve seen a 39 percent increase in membership during the past two years, and the support and enthusiasm of the local organizing committee in Raleigh and everyone in North Carolina has been so gracious and genuine.“