Day 2 of the ACM Party For A Cause Festival was INSANE. Live country music from today’s top acts from noon to midnight! That’s twelve full hours of fun for myself and thousands of other country fans! It was a lot hotter in the desert today, and this Mainer was loving every minute of the heat!
Gates opened at noon and the Cabela’s Archery Tournament was finishing up inside the gates. Team Luke Bryan (consisting of Dustin Lynch, Eric Paslay and Kristy Titus) was competing against Team Justin Moore (consisting of Chase Rice, Chris Janson, Granger Smith and Wade Middleton)in a tic-tac-toe archery tournament. (Literally shooting arrows at the space where they wanted to place their “X” or “O”.) People were everywhere, trying to get the artists attention, waving their cameras and posters for them to sign. A few lucky groups got some selfies with Luke!
The only one that I was lucky enough to snag a photo with was Granger Smith (thank you for that Granger! Much appreciated!). I can’t wait to see where his career leads him after his first number one song, Backroad Song.
Had a little bit of time to kill, so I walked around and found this “Where Are You From?” map and am proud to say I was the first and only pin from Maine!
Lots of fun vendors to visit and photo opportunities during sets and meet and greets. First performance of the day that I caught was Chris Lane and it was my first time seeing him! Chris got the crowd pumped up by covering a few hits like Backstreet Boy’s I Want It That Way and a mix of Silento’s Whip & Nae Nae/ It’s Going Down For Real (Flo Rida).
Up next was a whole bunch of meet and greets! Courtney Cole was included in WhoSay’s “10 Country Music Artists That Could Change Radio in 2016” and I had the opportunity to meet her at the Party For A Cause Festival after her performance.
Caught a few songs during A Thousand Horses’ performance then had to run to get in line to meet Chris Lane!
What other place can you see so many performers and meet so many artists in one day?! I seriously love ACM Week.
Running from one booth to the next was very worth it. Michael Ray was signing and taking photos at the Cabela’s booth at 3:30pm. I’m obsessed with the lighting in this next photo, and so happy that I finally have a “good” picture with Michael! Knowing when to put your flash on (even outdoors in bright daylight) really does make a difference!
I may or may not have been the first person in line to meet Cody Alan (CMT Cody for those of you who don’t know!). I was actually kind of the only person in line for a while… I was like, how does no one else want to meet this gorgeous human?! He spotted my koozie which had lyrics to Justin Moore’s song, You Look Like I Need A Drink and asked me if I were a Justin Moore fan… which kind of caught me off guard until I remembered I was holding the new WPOR koozie. I said yes of course, but showed him the other side and explained that I worked for WPOR in Portland Maine and he was excited to hear that and remembers working with our station in the past. So once that was out of the way, I asked him if he might be able to sign a special WPOR shirt that I planned on giving away on the radio to a lucky listener. (Contest details coming soon for all those of you readers who live in the Southern Maine area!)
So thankful that the photographer was just snapping away and was able to capture these candid moments! Of course my hair is a disaster in our actual “posed” photo though! Cody is such a genuine person and I was so happy to connect with him again.
Next I had a huge decision to make. Chris Stapleton was doing a meet and greet at 4:30pm with the longest line that I had ever seen. Frankie Ballard would be on stage around 5pm. There was no way to do both. The line to meet Stapleton was cut off a couple hundred people before me and I was basically in a “hopeful line”… he may or may not have time to get to us before having to run off to his next commitment. Would missing Frankie perform be worth the possibility of meeting Chris Stapleton?! I decided that I’ve seen Frankie a handful of times already and meeting Chris was most likely a once in a lifetime thing with his current fast-track to fame. So I made friends with the people around me and chatted and waited. When I got bored… the lady at the Ram booth convinced me to come take a photo… why not?! She told me to throw some gang signs or make a funny pose since I was so reluctant at first. Those tires were as tall as me… insane!
So I guess I’m going to keep y’all in suspense… do you think I got to meet Chris Stapleton or not? I guess you will have to wait till I post part 2 of Saturday! So many more great performances that evening!
In the meantime, check out the beginning of my ACM week adventure!