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Tickets nearly sold out for Rogers

Country-pop musician Kenny Rogers remains a popular draw in South Dakota, according to Corn Palace Director Mark Schilling.

Rogers' Aug. 25 show, which opens the five-day Corn Palace Festival in Mitchell, is virtually sold out, Schilling said Friday. It's the festival's first sell-out since the Big & Rich concert in 2005.

Rogers has sold millions of records during a career that has lasted more than 40 years. He rose to fame as the leader of The First Edition, a 1960s soft-rock act, and then morphed into a country singer in the late 1970s.

By the 1980s, Rogers was a massive star, selling out concerts, releasing chart-topping singles and appearing in movies and on TV.

That lengthy history of success is what is drawing people to the Corn Palace, Schilling said.

"They want to come and see the legend," he said.

About 2,700 seats have been sold for the show. There are five or six single seats remaining, he said.

Rogers has control of some tickets for his friends or relatives, according to Schilling. Some of them may be offered for sale the day of the show.

The husband and wife duo Joey & Rory will open for Rogers.

"We're very pleased," Schilling said of the sell-out. "It shows the kind of music people want to come out and see."

Magician Jason Latimer will appear Aug. 26 with opening act comedian Dick Hardwick.

The Corn Palace has sold about 350 tickets for that show, Schilling said, and he expects a lot of seats to be snapped up the week of the show. That's what happened with the comedian who appeared during the festival last year, he said.

Country singer Gary Allan, who will perform Aug. 27, is also drawing fans. So far, 1,700 tickets have been sold to that show, Schilling said, and ticket sales remain brisk.

Allan, a traditional country singer, has had chart success since 1993. He's also made a series of celebrated videos and has toured extensively.

Bjorn Again, an ABBA tribute group that will appear Aug. 28, will draw couples who are looking for a fun event on a Saturday night, according to Schilling. He said he expects fans of the Swedish pop quartet, which is gently mocked in the stage show, to buy tickets as the show nears. So far, about 500 tickets have been sold.

The final act of the festival is Everly, a female duo made up of singer Amber Sweeny and singer/actress Bethany Joy Galeotti, who appears on the TV show "One Tree Hill." They will perform on Aug. 29. Around 200 tickets have been sold for the show.

The duo, who perform alternative folk/pop, is being marketed in a new way for the Corn Palace, according to Schilling.

He said a campaign based on You Tube, Facebook and Twitter is drawing fans from across the country and, in some cases, the globe. He said people from Australia have bought tickets and will attend the show.

Everly will perform with Enation, a rock group that includes Michael Galeotti, who is married to Bethany Joy Galeotti.

Schilling said these ticket counts don't include sponsorships and partners who also receive tickets for shows. For more information on the Corn Palace Festival entertainment, go to

Tickets are available at the Corn Palace box office or at Call 995-8430 for more information.