Tanya Tucker to kick off Corn Palace Festival todayHeadliners to perform for 6 nights as rides, food, fun also offered.
By: Jennifer Jungwirth, The Daily Republic
Country legend Tanya Tucker will kick off the annual Corn Palace Festival today.
Tucker performs at 7 p.m. at the Corn Palace. She is the first in a variety of headlining acts that will perform at the six-day festival, which also includes a variety of food and retail vendors, amusement rides and free entertainment.
Tickets for Tucker’s show are $35, with all seats reserved.
With ticket sales increasing this week, Corn Palace Executive Director Mark Schilling said that it’s best to purchase tickets by calling the Corn Palace Box Office directly at 995-8430, or by stopping by the box office at 604 N. Main St.
Tucker began her career as a young girl and first hit the charts at 13. Hits like “Delta Dawn” and “What’s Your Mama’s Name?” launched her to star status while still in her teens.
Over the years, Tucker racked up Top 10 and No. 1 hits, including “San Antonio Stroll,” “Here’s Some Love” and “Two Sparrows in a Hurricane.” In 1991, she was named female vocalist of the year by the Country Music Association.
Adding Tucker to the Corn Palace Festival lineup proved beneficial, according to Schilling. He said that since the announcement of Tucker replacing country superstar Loretta Lynn, who had to cancel due to knee surgery, ticket sales for tonight’s performance increased.
Along with Tucker’s performance tonight, Goldstar Amusement Rides will open at 5 p.m. and run until 11 p.m. All vendors’ booths will open at 3:30 p.m. today.
Goldstar Amusement Rides runs from 4 to 11 p.m. Wednesday, 3 to 11 p.m. Thursday, 3 p.m. to midnight Friday, noon to midnight on Saturday and noon to 7 p.m. Sunday. Individual tickets for the amusement rides can be purchased on Main Street, or attendees can buy a Passport for Fun for $49 at the Corn Palace.
Country star Josh Turner, along with The Band Perry, performs at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Corn Palace.
As of Monday morning, Schilling estimated there were only 75 tickets left for the show, which costs $45. The large draw to Turner and The Band Perry was not surprising to Schilling.
“We anticipated that show to sell very well,” he said.
Teenage sensation Emily Osment takes the stage at 7 p.m. Thursday. Rock group 38 Special performs at 7:30 p.m. Friday. In addition to 38 Special, country newcomer Jason Jones will put on a free show at 9:30 p.m. at the Corn Palace.
The ’60s pop/rock Happy Together Tour, featuring several stars and groups from that era, will close out the festival shows at 7 p.m. Saturday. Tickets for Emily Osment are $25; they are $30 for 38 Special and $40 for the Happy Together Tour.
In addition to the headlining acts, Schilling said there is a wide variety of entertainment on the Freedom Stage, located just north of the Corn Palace.
Schilling said the Corn Palace Festival Committee booked Freedom Stage entertainment with the same mindset as the headlining acts each night at the Corn Palace — just making sure there’s a variety of quality entertainment.
“There’s a lot of different options, including those who are young with the ‘garage bands,’ as we call them,” Schilling said.
There’s folk music, acoustic performances and cover bands lined up from 1 to 10 p.m., depending on the day.
All food and retail vendors will open at noon Wednesday through Sunday.
Schilling said the number of vendors increased by “five or six” this year, and will offer the same variety as in years past.
However, there is more room for vendors and the amusement park with the new Fifth and Main parking lot, which is used each week for the Mitchell Farmers Market. Vending booths and various rides will be set up in the parking lot.
“It just makes it a little nicer for everybody,” Schilling said of the added space.
Art and other exhibit entries from youth and adults increase immensely this year, too, Schilling said.
“For the past couple years it’s been in that 50 to 75 range,” he said. “We’re hoping for 125 or more this year.”
For a full schedule of events, visit www.cornpalacefestival.com.