Raleigh welcomes IBMA World of Bluegrass 2023

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Tuesday, September 26, 2023
Raleigh welcomes IBMA World of Bluegrass 2023
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Organizers are hoping this year attendance will return to pre-pandemic levels.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Raleigh will be the center of the bluegrass world this week. IBMA World of Bluegrass runs Sept. 26 - 30 in downtown Raleigh.

The event is one of the big pillar music festivals in downtown Raleigh with more than 218,301 attendees and more than $18.6 million in direct economic impact in 2019 before the pandemic hit.

Organizers are hoping this year they will return to those levels.

"The goal is to get back to that," explained Loren Gold, Executive Vice President of the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau.

IBMA World of Bluegrass is made up of four components-conferences, showcases, an awards show, and a music festival. The conferences run Tuesday, Sept. 26 -28 with music showcases in the evenings during that time at venues like the Lincoln Theater.

Thursday night, Sept. 28th, the big awards show will be held at the Martin Marietta Performing Arts Complex and the big festival takes over Fayetteville Street Friday and Saturday.

More than 100 bands will play on eight stages along with 75 artists and more than three dozen food trucks.

"It is kind of what we refer to as one of the pillars of our music festival activations," Gold explained. "You know, we see it in the spring with Dreamville, we just saw, you know, smaller variation of music activation around Hopscotch. So, these are programs that are very kind of near and dear to Raleigh that we help kind of organically grow."

This is the eleventh year Raleigh has hosted the event and it is under contract for 2024.

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