Chris Cagle to headline River Town Days, BBQ to bring famous teams

Published 8:06 am Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Since the announcement that the BASS Elite Series regular season would begin in Bainbridge in March with a tournament featuring 105 of the world’s top anglers, the River Town Days committee and Bainbridge-Decatur County Chamber of Commerce have worked to enhance all other aspects of the annual River Town Days festival.
While in year’s past the festival has seen between 1,000 and 3,000 visitors, the BASS Elite Tournament in conjunction with River Town Days is expected to see crowds swell from 8,000 to 10,000 visitors throughout the weekend of March 14-16.
In addition to the tournament, there will be a full schedule of musical entertainment, arts and crafts vendors and a barbecue cooking competition that will feature world-class cooking teams as seen on the Food Network.
Hosted at the Earle May Boat Basin, the event will be the site for many out-of-town visitors seeing Bainbridge and Decatur County for their first time.

A full schedule of entertainment is planned for Friday through Saturday, March 14-16 with country music artists across the spectrum.
The festival announced its headlining act, Chris Cagle who is a nationally known recording artist and one of the biggest names to hit the River Town Days stage in the event’s history.
Beginning with Friday, the Crooked Shooz Band of Tallahassee, Fla., will go on stage at 6 p.m. Crooked Shooz is a dance band, giving listeners rhyme and blues, classic rock and roll and great dance music for a family atmosphere.
Beginning Saturday at noon, up and coming country artist Brandon Vann from Americus will perform on stage before the Saturday BASS Elite weigh-in, playing selections from his album, “Down Home.”
Returning to the River Town Days stage at 1:30 p.m. will be the Michael Miller Band from Tallahassee.
Saturday evening, country artist Jacob Powell will perform at 7 p.m. Powell was named the New Artist To Watch in 2014 by the Country Music Association. Powell has caught the attention of many in Nashville and signed an album deal last year.
Following Powell will be Chris Cagle, who has had several hit songs, including a number one hit single in 2002, “I Breathe In and I Breathe Out.”
Attendees will recognize his hits like “What a Beautiful Day,” and “Chicks Dig It.”
“Cagle is proven to put on a great and energetic show that will be fun for all who attend,” River Town Days Chairman Jeff Findley said. “Attendees will instantly recognize some of his hit songs as he performs and we are excited to have an act of this caliber in Bainbridge.”
Findley said Cagle is one of the biggest names to hit the River Town Days stage and he is a nationally known and recognized act.
Sunday at 1 p.m. the Thomasville bluegrass band Midnight Rain will bring their blended variety of progressive and traditional bluegrass acoustic sounds.

Flames on the Flint
In addition to the tournament and music during River Town Days, the event is introducing the first annual Flames on the Flint barbecue contest. Chairman Ronnie Godwin announced the Kansas City Barbeque Society — the largest barbecue association in the world — has sanctioned the cook-off. Many nationally recognized barbecue teams will be competing in Bainbridge during River Town Days, Godwin said, coming from all across the country.
“So far we have two teams committed to participate that were both on the Pit Masters BBQ television series,” Godwin said.
Teams are coming to Bainbridge from the Carolinas, Flordia, Georgia, Louisiana, Virginia, Oklahoma and New Jersey. Several local teams are entered in the competition as well, including a team from the restaurant Boyd’s BBQ.
“We have great barbecue down here in Bainbridge but I’m excited to taste world class championship stuff,” Godwin said. “We are also asking that if more local teams want to sign up they can do so now.”
Teams and even groups of friends interested in going head-to-head with famous barbecuing teams can fill out a form on and pay a fee to compete.
Godwin said the event will be a great time, beginning Friday and then judging begins on Saturday. There will be a guaranteed $15,000 payout, the grand champion winning $5,000 and first through fifth categories winning cash prizes as well.

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BASS and other
105 anglers will compete in the BASS Elite Series tournament — the tournament that will kick off the regular Bassmaster season.
These anglers are the best-of-the-best in the bass fishing world.
In addition to weigh-ins each day of the festival at 3 p.m., there will be arts and crafts vendors, food vendors and children’s activities and games throughout the weekend at the boat basin. Unlimited ride armbands for children can be purchased for $10.
There will also be 20 BASS sponsor exhibit tents such as Carhartt, Toyota and BASS Pro Shop.