Country Concert wraps for another year


Tens of thousands of fans attend 3-day event

By Melody Vallieu - [email protected]



Country music headliner Eric Church sings to a sea of fans during the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016 at Fort Loramie on Saturday.


Country music headliner Eric Church sings to a sea of fans during the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016 at Fort Loramie on Saturday.


Thomas Rhett performs for country music fans Saturday, the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016.


Thomas Rhett performs for country music fans Saturday, the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016.


Cleaning up their Country Concert camp site Sunday, July 10 are, left to right, Nick Seale, Josh Bechtlo, Brittany Seale, all of Tipp City, Destiny Kiphart, of Vandalia, and Billie Bowling, of Dayton.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

By Melody Vallieu

[email protected]

FORT LORAMIE — Country Concert in the Hills 2016 ended its reign over the weekend with a star-studded lineup Saturday night.

Tens of thousands of people flocked as close to center stage as possible Saturday evening as the likes of Kacey Musgraves, Thomas Rhett and headliner Eric Church took to the stage.

Early in the day, artists such as Pilgrim, Haley Georgia, The Steeldrivers, Brothers Osborne, Cassadee Pope and A Thousand Horses had performed for the throngs of fans.

Leesha Bolton of Sidney, a graduate of Fairlawn High School who now lives in Columbus, said she comes back every year to celebrate summer.

“I grew up listening to country music and my mom brought us to Country Concert for the first time when I was 15,” Bolton said. “I come back every year for good music and to hang out with family and friends.”

Others said they come for much the same reason.

Jake Stevens, a Piqua High School graduate now residing in Cincinnati, brought his fiancee Katy Hyder, formerly of Cleveland, now also of Cincinnati. The two were celebrating not only her birthday, but the third anniversary of meeting each other.

Hyder said the two met for the first time at Country Concert in 2013, and are now engaged to be married in 2017.

Stevens said he also comes back every year to spend the weekend with family and friends, many of them from high school.

“It’s what makes America great,” said the former EOD specialist for the U.S. Army. “Our freedom to have events such as this.”

Hyder, a Thomas Rhett fan, along with Stevens, had front stage passes for Rhett and said he put on an amazing show.

Rhett sang such crowd favorites as “It Goes Like This” and “Die a Happy Man,” along with his newest party anthem, “Vacation.”

As night fell over the sea of country music fans, Eric Church took the stage to a roaring crowd of hyped-up music lovers.

The country crooner belted out “Carolina,” “Springsteen,” “Like a Wreckin’ Ball,” “Talladega,” “Record Year,” “Mr. Misunderstood” and more.

Out of the weekend’s lineup, Bolton couldn’t wait to see Eric Church — and he didn’t disappoint.

“He lit the place up,” Bolton said. “He was amazing, it was a great performance. He did exactly what I believed he would bring: energy, fun and amazing music.”

Auglaize County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Michael Vorhees said Friday’s concert was quiet, with just a few minor arrests throughout the day, and by late Saturday, he said the same was true.

“Things have been really calm,” Vorhees said.

Country music headliner Eric Church sings to a sea of fans during the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016 at Fort Loramie on Saturday.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_EricChurch.jpgCountry music headliner Eric Church sings to a sea of fans during the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016 at Fort Loramie on Saturday.

Country music headliner Eric Church sings to a sea of fans during the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016 at Fort Loramie on Saturday.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_ErichChurch2.jpgCountry music headliner Eric Church sings to a sea of fans during the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016 at Fort Loramie on Saturday.

Thomas Rhett performs for country music fans Saturday, the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_Rhett1.jpgThomas Rhett performs for country music fans Saturday, the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016.

Thomas Rhett performs for country music fans Saturday, the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_Rhett2.jpgThomas Rhett performs for country music fans Saturday, the final day of Country Concert in the Hills 2016.

Cleaning up their Country Concert camp site Sunday, July 10 are, left to right, Nick Seale, Josh Bechtlo, Brittany Seale, all of Tipp City, Destiny Kiphart, of Vandalia, and Billie Bowling, of Dayton.
http://sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_SDN071116CountryEnd.jpgCleaning up their Country Concert camp site Sunday, July 10 are, left to right, Nick Seale, Josh Bechtlo, Brittany Seale, all of Tipp City, Destiny Kiphart, of Vandalia, and Billie Bowling, of Dayton. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News
Tens of thousands of fans attend 3-day event

By Melody Vallieu

[email protected]

Reach Melody Vallieu at (937) 552-2131 or email at [email protected]

Reach Melody Vallieu at (937) 552-2131 or email at [email protected]

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