Local News

Blues artist to headline downtown Raleigh festival

Posted July 6, 2009 11:34 a.m. EDT

— Three-time Grammy Award winner Delbert McClinton will headline the Raleigh Wide Open 4 festival downtown this fall, Mayor Charles Meeker said Monday.

The festival is set for Oct. 24 to coincide with the opening of City Plaza downtown.

The event will start at 10 a.m. with a parade along Fayetteville Street. Musical acts, arts and crafts and family activities will be held downtown throughout the day. Fireworks will follow McClinton's 9 p.m. concert to close the event.

Meeker said the $100,000 budget for this year's event is about half of what the city spent last fall for the third-annual festival, when legendary rocker Chuck Berry helped open the downtown Marriott hotel. He has appealed to local businesses for support to make Raleigh Wide Open 4 a success.

"We want to throw a party worthy of marking the opening of City Plaza and the 500 block of Fayetteville Street," he said in a June 24 letter sent to local businesses. "I hope that we can count on your continued outstanding corporate citizenship and generosity."

Greensboro artist Jim Gallucci is installing four signature 50-foot light towers at the four corners of City Plaza this month, Meeker said.

McClinton won Grammy Awards for his "Nothing Personal" and "Cost of Living" albums. He also won a Grammy in 1991 for a duet with Bonnie Raitt, "Good Man, Good Woman." A songwriter, pianist and harmonica player, he will release a new album, "Acquired Taste," in August.