REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala.--Redstone’s annual Army concert has proven popular with country music fans, but others were ready for another genre.

They’ve gotten their wish.

Welcome to the first “Blues, Brew and Barbecue Festival,” Aug. 20 at the Redstone Activity Field. The festival begins at 3 p.m. Gate 10 at Patton Road will open at noon; and the activity field gates open at 2.

“This is the very first blues festival that we’ve ever done,” Christal Howard, administrative management specialist in Family and Morale Welfare and Recreation, said. “Our customers wanted us to do something different. I guess everybody’s tired of all the rock and country and wanted us to do something else. So we listened to our customers.”

The entertainers include headliner Leela James; the Delta Guitar Slingers, featuring Michael Burks, Lurrie Bell and Sherman Robertson; opening act Rick Ward & Company, from Huntsville; and Tinsley Ellis.

“And we’re going to have a variety of craft beers and Southern-style barbecue,” Howard said. “And this event is open to the public.”

Advance tickets are $15; and the cost is $20 on the day of show. “We have a premium ticket for $60 and that includes seating, separate restrooms, catered barbecue dinner, free domestic premium draft beer and wine,” Howard said.

There will be a cash bar. Handicap seating will be available at the event.

Tickets are on sale at the Redstone FMWR ticket offices, including building 3711, the Post Restaurant Fund at the Sparkman Center, the Post Exchange and the bowling center; and also through Premium tickets can only be purchased at the Community Activity Center, building 3711. For more information, call 313-5224 or visit

Sponsors include Woody Anderson Ford, 94.1 WHRP, Fox 54, Knology, Miller Lite, Redstone Federal Credit Union, Verizon, Boeing, USAA, Blue Moon, Samuel Adams, Sweetwater, and Operation BBQ.

“This is the first time we’ve had a blues festival/concert here at Redstone Arsenal,” Kenneth McDonald, chief of resource management division under FMWR, said. “So we’re offering the community diversity and first-class entertainment at a great value.”