Come for the music, stay for the fun.
By Kate Rader • Photos by Mark Youngblood
Are you ready to put on your boots and kick up some dust? Get out your festival attire because the Dirty Boots Country Fest is coming to Washington County on April 15th! This family-friendly event has quickly grown into the biggest country music party in the region, with hot country acts, regional food, beer, wine and spirits, games, kids’ activities, and shopping.
Inspired by her lifelong love of country music and line dancing, three years ago Amber Burdick urged WiYNN to consider starting a country festival. This year, as event director, she plans to give festivalgoers plenty of opportunity to share that passion.
Amber says she grew up listening to country music, and shares that connection with her husband, Scott, who grew up in Texas. As they fell in love, the two attended concerts and danced together but had to travel outside of the area to do so. “I just felt we had to do a country festival,” Amber says. “I want people to feel right at home in a place that’s laid back where they can have a good time and learn something new. I want to get everyone up and dancing.”
That’s exactly what you’ll want to do at this year’s event. Gates open at noon to festival grounds filled with food, drinks, and games. Pop a tent (limited prepaid spaces are available), bring some chairs, and plan to party the day away with activities like mechanical bull riding, chicken poop bingo, corn hole and more. Shop South Bound Western Wear and other vendors for clothing, boots, buckles, and hats.
The location of this year’s event was not 100% when this article went to print. It will be held in Washington County along the 81 Corridor between Washington County/Franklin County State Line and Washington County/Berkeley County State Line.“We love the fact that we can support local business owners as well as contribute fun and exciting events to the Tri-State community,” WiYNN owner Dave Grimm says.
Some ticket options include a Dirty Boots commemorative drinking glass, and unlimited beer and wine from the many stations located throughout the festival. Spirits will be available at the OK Corral bar and priced a la carte.
Come hungry because there will be a wide variety of food trucks offering hot food and snacks like barbecue, pretzels, charcuterie and more throughout the event.
But the event’s main attraction? A full roster of hot country artists—from regional favorites to national acts. Warm up with the Southern bluesy style of Bobby D and the Truck Stop Burritos, then boot scoot to Nashville recording artists Nathan Bartgis Band. Maryland Songwriter of the Year and Performers of the year Dean Crawford and the Dunn’s River Band bring their signature style to contemporary and traditional country music. End the night on a country high with the Appalachian country sounds of national recording artists the Davisson Brothers Band.
A large dance floor will be located near the stage this year. Amber plans to make instructors available to teach line dancing and two-stepping, and to get people motivated. She also hopes to engage kids with new activities, like the Western “Giddyup Package.” “We want to focus more on kids more this year, too,” she says. “The package includes face painting, a pony ride, cowboy hat, sheriff star, bandana, and kids can design their own Western vest to wear.
Visit WiYNN.com to purchase tickets.
General Admission and General Admission with unlimited beer and wine tickets are available. Giddy Up Kid’s Packs, Pop Up Tent add-ons, and Premier Parking passes are available for an additional charge on the website. $1.50 of each ticket will be donated to “Justice’s Sake,” a local nonprofit committed to child abuse prevention. Kids 12 & under get in FREE.