CINCINNATI - Has it really been 52 years? Yes. The Macy’s Music Festival has been a must for Tri-State music lovers and drawn thousands of people to the region for that long.
Here are 9 things to know about the fun-filled festival this weekend.
1) The basics. The festival will be held at Paul Brown Stadium July 25 and July 26. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster and at the box office at the stadium. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. each day. The shows start at 7:30 p.m. and will end at about 1 a.m.
2) The lineup. In true something-for-everyone fashion, it includes Charlie Wilson, Chaka Khan, K. Michelle, Robin Thicke, and After 7 on Friday. On Saturday the performers will be New Edition, Mint Condition, Ne-Yo, Keyshia Cole, and Chrisette Michelle.
ICYMI: Last year's lineup was stellar too: Bootsy Collins, Jill Scott and the ever-controversial R. Kelly were among the performers.
Cincinnati's own Bootsy Collins funkified the Macy's Music Festival in 2013. (Photo by Kareem Elgazzer | WCPO Photojournalist)
3) It's good for us. According to the Greater Cincinnati Center for Economic Education from the University of Cincinnati, the Macy’s Music Festival brings in about $25 million annually.
4) What a crowd! This year about 65,000-80,000 people are expected to attend over the course of the two days.
5) Evolution. Before it was called the Macy’s Music Festival, the event was the Ohio Jazz Festival. Macy’s did not become a headline sponsor until 2005.
6) Great timing. Many attendees of the Urban League's national conference at the Duke Energy Center, will take a break from serious talk and take in the festival.
7) Start your engines. For the first time this year, the Macy’s Music Festival has a secondary sponsorship with Toyota Motor Corporation.
8) Social media. Fans who like the Macy's Music Festival Facebook page to are entered to win $100 gift card to Macy’s. Follow the festival on Twitter, too: the handle is @MacysMusicFest and the hashtag is #MMF2014.
9) Food. This is a concert in Cincinnati, so there will be plenty to eat, from barbecue to fried fish. If you can't tear yourself away from the music during the festival, you can find nearby dining options --even after the event.
The weather looks good for opening night on Friday, but rain could put a damper on things Saturday, with a chance for storms. Check your forecast here!