The inaugural Carolina Country Music Festival is all plugged in and ready for sound check as the city of Myrtle Beach and concert officials are putting the finishing touches on the June 4-7 downtown festival.
Four days of live music from more than 35 big-name country music stars, more than 20,000 fans expected to attend the event in the downtown district, and the effort to transform the former Myrtle Beach Pavilion amusement park site into a major concert venue are among the many challenges that are coming together at the last minute. So are some important details that concert-goers need to know before they head to the show:
Parking: Simply put, parking will be a nightmare in the downtown district. The city is setting aside special parking for handicap and a limited number of first come, first served spots in the parking garage on the corner of Ninth Avenue North and Chester Street for $25, but those will not last long. Surrounding private lots also will jack up their prices depending upon proximity to the concert venue. Boardwalk Parking, located one block north of the Pavilion site on Chester Street (behind Mammy's Kitchen) may be the best deal downtown at $10 a day, plus it's a great place to grab lunch before you go to the show.
Shuttles: The Carolina Country Music Festival will operate special shuttles to deliver patrons with tickets directly to the venue. A $50 shuttle pass is good for one person for all three days of the festival (Friday through Sunday). The shuttle pass allows patrons to park at the former Myrtle Square Mall site between 23rd and 27th Avenues North off Oak Street and North Kings Highway. Shuttle pass holders will have to show their paid receipt for their paid shuttle pass on paper or on their cell phones to parking lot attendees to receive a wristband. Shuttles will run continuously from the lot to the venue from noon to midnight. The lot opens at 11:30 a.m. each day, and passengers can ride the shuttles an unlimited number of times with their wristbands. Vehicles are not allowed to be left overnight at the shuttle lot. Kids ages 10 and under can ride for free. Shuttle passes may be purchased online although a limited number will be sold onsite for $60, cash only.
Tickets: Several ticket packages are still available, including three-day general admission ($199), three-day main stage VIP ($349) and three-day Super VIP ($1,299), which includes stage-level viewing, private bathrooms and free food and drinks. Patrons can add on a trip down the Adrenaline Adventure Zipline for $39.99. Single-day tickets are not currently available, except for the passes to the Thursday night kickoff concert. Those tickets are $39.99 (half price for Myrtle Beach locals) and are available online at www.carolinacountrymusicfest.com.
Lockers: A limited number of personal-use lockers will be available so patrons can keep their valuables safely stored away and keep their hands free for drinking a cold beer at the show. Enjoy all-day access to your locker and to the cell-phone charging stations located on site. Guests are encouraged to reserve a locker online in advance. Patrons will receive an e-mail 24 hours before the festival with their locker location, number, and combination. The rentals are available for all three days so guests can have unlimited access to their locker all weekend. General admission lockers are $15 per day or $45 for the entire weekend. VIP lockers with unlimited cell-phone charging are $20 per day or $55 for the whole festival.