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40th Dogwood Festival to feature diverse musical acts


The 1990s alternative-rock bands Hoobastank and Marcy Playground will headline the opening night concert of the 40th annual Fayetteville Dogwood Festival while three national recording country acts will share the stage on the second night, organizers announced Wednesday night.

A Prince tribute band will close out the festival on that Sunday.

The acts were announced during Dogwood Festival Media Day at Cape Fear Botanical Garden.

The Dogwood Festival, returning for the first time in three years, is scheduled to run from April 22-24, continuing its tradition of hosting a three-day event.

The spring festival was canceled a month before its expected run in March 2020 and again in 2021 due to COVID-19 pandemic concerns.

“Ladies and gentlemen, Dogwood Festival is back in full swing,” said Curtis Jordan, the entertainment chairman for the popular street festival.

Activities will take place in Festival Park and surrounding portions of the downtown district.

“We’re going to take over downtown, guys,” said Antonio Renteria, chairman of the board for the Dogwood Festival.

The planned musical acts at Festival Park – which are free and open to the public – offer some diversity for festival-goers.

On April 22, a local act to be announced at a later date will kick off the Festival Park stage bill that features headliners Hoobastank and Marcy Playground.

On April 23, three local acts to be determined will open country night before headliners Dillon Carmichael, Kameron Marlowe and Tyler Farr reach the stage.

On April 24, three local acts will again open before the headlining “The Purple Madness – A Tribute to Prince” tells the crowd, “Let’s Go Crazy” in purple royalty fashion.

“We’ll release the local acts later on down the line,” said Sarahgrace Snipes, the festival’s executive director.

New to this year’s festival will be a local music area on Gillespie Street, featuring acoustic country music, Snipes said.

A professional wrestling tournament billed as “Ring Wars North Carolina” will take place at the intersection of Hay Street and Ray Avenue on April 23 and 24.

Fred Surgeon, the president of Sweet Valley Ranch of Fayetteville, said a small part of the farm’s “Dinosaur World” attraction will be brought downtown, giving children the opportunity to ride one of the facsimile reptiles from the past.

“Which is pretty cool. Something I never did when I was a child was ride a dinosaur,” Surgeon said, tongue clearly in cheek.

He said Sweet Valley Ranch is known for its animals, so the star of his part of the festival will be some of the facility's farm animals. Sweet Valley Ranch’s entry into the Dogwood Festival, he said, “is about engaging with nature and with our animals.”

Returning festival activities will include the Airborn Aerials; BMX shows; a car, motorcycle and truck show; the KidZone on the festival midway; the Shadows of the Fire; and the general street festival in the downtown area.

Festival hours will be 5 to 11 p.m. on April 22; noon to 11 p.m. on April 23; and noon to 9 p.m. on April 24.

Here’s more about this year’s musical entertainment:

  • Hoobastank, a California band formed in 1994, is perhaps best known for the single, “The Reason.”
  • With origins in Minneapolis, Marcy Playground gained national success with the 1997 hit “Sex and Candy.” The song spent 15 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart.
  • Dillon Carmichael has been an important figure in Nashville since releasing his critically acclaimed 2018 debut, “Hell on an Angel.” He has toured with Lynyrd Skynyrd, Trace Adkins and Dwight Yoakam, online sources said. Carmichael’s singles have included “Dancing Away With My Heart,” “I Do For You,” “Hot Beer’ and “Son of A.”
  • Kameron Marlowe, who was born and raised in Kannapolis, was a contestant on season 15 of NBC’s “The Voice.” His songs have included “Sober as a Drunk” “Giving You Up” and “Steady Heart.”
  • Tyler Farr is a country-rocker with a trio of No. 1 songs to his credit: “Redneck Crazy,” “Whiskey is My Water” and “A Guy Walks into a Bar.” Farr has been on the country scene since the 2013 release of his debut album, online sources said.
  • “The Purple Madness – A Tribute to Prince” is a tribute to the acclaimed funk and rhythm-and-blues artist.

Michael Futch covers Fayetteville and education for CityView TODAY. He can be reached at mfutch@cityviewnc.com. Have a news tip? Email news@CityViewTODAY.com.

Fayetteville, Dogwood Festival, Festival Park, downtown, concerts