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May 20, 2009

2009 Illinois State Fair Grandstand Entertainment Lineup Announced
Lynyrd Skynyrd, Kelly Clarkson, Heart, Bangles, Montgomery Gentry, and Josh Turner among scheduled performers

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois State Fair officials have announced the Grandstand entertainment for the 2009 Illinois State Fair. The announcement was made today inside the Artisan’s Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds.

“I am really excited about the Grandstand line-up,” Fair Manager Amy Bliefnick said. “Every year, we aim to bring the best entertainment possible to Central Illinois, and I believe crowds of all ages will be thrilled with this year’s performers.”

Lynyrd Skynyrd and Bo Bice will open the State Fair concerts Friday, Aug. 14.  Lynyrd Skynyrd is a southern rock band that rose to prominence with classic anthems such as Freebird and Sweet Home Alabama that have survived through generations of music lovers. In 2006, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Bo Bice was the runner-up in the 4th season of American Idol. His hits include Inside Your Heaven and Witness.

Kelly Clarkson and Eric Hutchinson will perform Saturday, Aug. 15. Clarkson, the first winner of American Idol, has become a household name with hit singles including Miss Independent, A Moment Like This and Since U Been Gone.  Clarkson broke records on the Billboard Hot 100 list last month when her latest smash hit jumped from #97 to #1. Eric Hutchinson, her opening act, is a singer and songwriter who has been featured on national programs such as World Café and the Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Josh Turner with Jamey Johnson and Chuck Wicks will take the stage Sunday, Aug. 16. Grammy nominated Josh Turner is a country artist with an unmistakable baritone voice. He has celebrated back-to-back multi-week #1 radio singles and back-to-back platinum albums, Long Black Train and Your Man.  Jamey Johnson is a singer and award-winning songwriter who has written hits for Trace Adkins and George Strait. His latest album, That Lonesome Song, recently went gold. Chuck Wicks is a rising star in the country music industry. His hit single, Stealing Cinderella, was the biggest debut of any country artist in 2007.

Montgomery Gentry with Kellie Pickler and James Otto will entertain fairgoers Friday, Aug. 21.  Eddie Montgomery and Troy Gentry have been a cornerstone of country music since 1999, singing anthems about blue collar life, work, love and patriotism. Their hits include Daddy Won’t Sell the Farm, She Couldn’t Change Me and What Do Ya Think About That. Kellie Pickler began her career during the 5th season of American Idol. She has since released two albums, with hits such as Red High Heels and Don’t You Know You’re Beautiful. James Otto began his career as a country artist in 2002. His hits include Just Got Started Lovin' You, which was Billboard’s number one country single of 2008.

Heart will perform with The Bangles Saturday, Aug. 22. Female rock pioneers Ann and Nancy Wilson, the founding members of Heart, have sold more than 30 million albums worldwide.  Their hits range from hard rock songs like Barracuda to ballads such as What About Love.  The Bangles are an all-female pop band that scored several hit singles in the 1980’s, including Walk Like an Egyptian and Manic Monday.   The Bangles currently are in the studio working on a new album.

Nat and Alex Wolff with Tiffany Giardina will close the Grandstand acts Sunday, Aug. 23.  Nat and Alex Wolff are actors-musicians best known for their roles on Nickelodeon’s hit TV series The Naked Brothers Band. Tiffany Giardina is a 15-year-old singer and songwriter whose single, Hurry Up and Save Me, was featured on the soundtrack to Another Cinderella Story.

All concerts begin at 8 p.m. except for the Alex and Nat Wolff concert, which will begin at 6:30 p.m.  Grandstand reserved seats and track tickets will go on sale Saturday, May 30, at 10 a.m. through Ticketmaster.  Tickets can be purchased either on the internet at Ticketmaster.com, by calling 1-800-745-3000 or visiting any Ticketmaster outlet.  Ticket order forms can be downloaded on the Illinois State Fair website at www.illinoisstatefair.info.  The Grandstand ticket office will open Saturday, June 6, at 9 a.m.

All adults and children 3 years of age and older must have a ticket for both concerts and tractor pulls. All sales are final.  The fair does not provide refunds or exchanges on ticket purchases.

DATE  PERFORMER               TICKET PRICES                 Reserved  Track
Aug. 14 Lynyrd Skynyrd with Bo Bice       $30-25-20  $30
Aug. 15 Kelly Clarkson with Eric Hutchinson       $30-25-20  $30     
Aug. 16 Josh Turner w/ Jamey Johnson & Chuck Wicks $20-17-15  $20 
Aug. 17 Illinois Symphony         Free Admission
Aug. 21 Montgomery Gentry w/ Kellie Pickler      $28-23-20  $28
  & James Otto
Aug. 22 Heart with The Bangles        $25-20  $25
Aug. 23 Alex & Nat Wolff with Tiffany Giardina      $15-10  $15
Aug. 22 USAC Silver Crown Series Auto Races       Adults $20       Children $10  
                      Day of event - $25
Aug. 23 ARCA Super Series Auto Races       Adults $20       Children $10
                      Day of event -$25

The theme for the 2009 Illinois State Fair was also announced today. This year, officials chose the theme “An All American Fair.”   The Illinois State Fair runs Aug. 14-23.    



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