Hodag Country Music Festival Kicks Off Thursday | WSAU News/Talk 550 AM 99.9 FM
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Hodag Country Music Festival Kicks Off Thursday | WSAU News/Talk 550 AM 99.9 FM

The Oneida County Sheriff’s Office is providing security at Hodag. Photo courtesy of WAOW TV

RHINELANDER, WI (WSAU) — The biggest party in Northwood kicks off Thursday.

The Hodag Country Music Festival kicks off with performances by Brett Westgrove, Neil McCoy and Ashley McBride on the main stage. It’s an event that never gets old for the audience and those backstage, including WDEZ’s Bryan Scott, who has been attending the event for over 10 years.

“It’s unlike any other country music festival I’ve been to because it’s a family event. Everyone is just so nice and there’s no drama or anything like you sometimes get at bigger festivals. It’s really the biggest and best event that comes to Northern Wisconsin.”

Scott credits the festival’s family ownership structure with keeping the atmosphere small even as the event has grown. “They never charge extra for better seating. There are no VIP seats; everyone has an equal chance for a great view.”

The festival elements began earlier this week with shows in the pavilion and a Wednesday chairlift that allowed campers to grab a spot on the lawn in front of the main stage. Jenna Jane begins performances on the main stage at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

The music continues Friday with Chase Rice and Bailey Zimmerman. To see the full four-night lineup, click here.