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Businesses in Saint John are preparing for inaugural Box Car Country Music Festival

todayJuly 26, 2023 2

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Grab your cowboys boots and cowgirl hats for the Maritimes latest country music festival.

“It’s a whole new kind of experience we are trying to create,” says Area 506 Founder Ray Gracewood.

The inaugural Box Car Country Music Festival at the waterfront container village in Saint John, N.B., is expected to bring thousands to the port city for the two day festival running from July 28 to 29.

Performers to take the stage between the two days include Dean Brody, Hunter Brothers, Madeline Merlo, and James Barker Band among several others.

“There is an energy within the city I think as we get close to festival season now and that’s great,” Gracewood says. “Whether it’s in the restaurants or the bars people are getting excited to come uptown enjoy the weather and enjoy the shows.”

Gracewood says preparations will go up right until Friday. The Music Festival itself requires a ticket, but those without one will have lots of country events to take part in next door the container village.

“Everything from a country karaoke event to lasso competition to line dancing,” says Gracewood. “All sorts of great little things people can participate in and so whether you have tickets to the festival or not it’s a great opportunity to come down.”

With all the rain seen so far this summer in Saint John, festival season is a welcomed site for local businesses.

“It’s nice to see some energy about the city,” says Pristine Co-Owner Matt Shields. “Because it has been quiet with the weather. So we are just really looking forward to it, hoping to see lots of smiling faces and cowboys hats and just people having a good time.”

The sentiment is echoed by Gahan House Assistant General Manager Hollie Bracken.

“We can already see it starting,” Bracken says. “Even [Monday] we had a crazy day and people are just excited and amped up for Boxcar coming and all the country music, and just in general sunny days.”

“The feedback has been positive and I think people are really excited so we are feeling pretty optimistic at this point.”

“Our hope is that we have turned a corner on the weather,” Gracewood says. “June was obviously a tough month in terms of rainfall. Optimism is in the air, the vendors are feeling pretty good about the rest of the summer.”


Tickets are still available for both Friday and Saturday nights shows, which can be found online on Area 506’s website.


For the latest New Brunswick news, visit our dedicated provincial page.



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Written by: Soft FM Radio Staff

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