Three straight days of live music is any concert lover’s dream. No matter the rain, no matter the heat, no matter the mud, the 2017 Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam was an event to remember for years to come.
With a forecast of 80 percent chance of rain on Friday and Saturday and a 20 percent chance on Sunday, some people may have been scared away from attending the Labor Day weekend music festival. Regardless, over 20,000 country music fans filled Frank Brown Park in Panama City Beach. They sang along to their favorite artists in the rain and in the heat, seemingly unaware of the less-than-ideal conditions.
Music started at 2 p.m. each day and went on until midnight. Headliners Jason Aldean, Little Big Town and Luke Bryan closed the party each night, giving the crowd everything they could have wanted and more.
Friday night, Aldean played about three songs in the pouring rain before the remainder of the show was cancelled due to weather concerns.
One of the most talked about aspects of the weekend, aside from the performers, was the mud. Rain from the week before plus the downpour Friday night had the ground at Frank Brown Park looking more like a mud puddle than a soccer field. By Saturday morning, every store within miles of Panama City Beach was sold out of rain boots. Concertgoers were determined to see their favorite artists perform even if they were ankle deep in muck.
Aside from the headliners, performers included big-name artists such as Brett Eldredge, Kip Moore, Lee Brice, Tyler Farr, Dan & Shay, Kane Brown and many more.
This was the fifth annual Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam and it definitely will not be the last. Producers teased the crowd with talks of the great artists that will perform at next year’s festival. Tickets for 2018 are on sale now.
– Caroline Haney
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