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EVENTS & HOLIDAYS

Country Fan Fest bringing in thousands to Tooele County

Jul 7, 2023, 2:01 PM | Updated: Jul 8, 2023, 2:03 pm

TOOELE COUNTY, Utah — Thousands of locals and out-of-towners will make their way to Tooele County July 26-29, for this year’s Country Fan Fest featuring a variety of top country performers.

The influx of foot traffic means a boom for the county.

Mike Holshue, Festival Director for Country Fan Fest, said a lot of the fans have been coming since Country Fan Fest started.

The fan base keeps growing. 

“We’re racing to the finish line now!” Holshue said.

The race is all in the lungs as thousands of fans show up to sing their hearts out during the festival.

“It’s a record banner year for us, and that’s saying something,” Holshue said.

Holshue has not been getting a lot of sleep lately as he has been putting the finishing touches on the Country Fan Fest, which is expected to bring in 40,000 people during that weekend. 

“I mean, you’ve got people all the way backed to the end of this field. You’ve got bars here. You’ve got a fan club here. Mega VIP takes up that whole side over there,” Holshue said.

For many, a part of the experience is camping.

He said at first, they had around 1,500 campsites, but those booked out fast. 

“We’re adding 160 campsites,” Holshue said.

As country music plays, so does Tooele County see the impact of the festival play out. 

“Each year when Fan Fest is over, our lodging is already booked, so people are booking a year in advance to come back, so we know we’re having a huge increase in our tourism tax,” Brittany Lopez, Assistant County Manager said. 

Lopez said the county earns some revenue from campground sales as well as sales tax off tickets, which means thousands of dollars are pouring into the county.

She said it is also helping local businesses, from advertising to trash and dumpster services.

“The owner of that company has said that for six weeks, they see a huge increase in his sales revenue, and with that has caused it so he’s had to increase his fleet and his employees,” Lopez said.

Whether it’s the music, camping, or this year, a good ‘ole honky tonk, Holshue said there is plenty to keep one’s attention.  

“You can come and get your boot scooting boogie on!” Holshue said.

The hope is that people see the state and its heart. 

“We have great assets. We have trails. We have canyons and Salt Flats. For us, this event exposes people to those things where most people have probably never heard of us… It’s  fun to bring these participants out to this event and once they come here for Country Fan Fest,  then they come back and visit,” Lopez said.

“This shows heart… They care about the guest experience in a way that nobody else does,” Holshue said. 

Holshue said the festival is getting close to selling out on their camping sites with roughly 30 rentable sites left. 

He said there are still a number of tickets available. 

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Country Fan Fest bringing in thousands to Tooele County