Blues, Views and BBQ to bring tunes to Westport
Coming into its 11th year, the Blues, Views and BBQ Festival taking place Sept. 1-2, has evolved into a family-friendly event while keeping its core focus on Southern-inspired food and good blues music.
Located at the Levitt Pavilion on the banks of the Saugatuck River in downtown Westport, the festival has grown over the years into one of the area’s summer’s must-attend events with more bands, more food and more of everything.
“The big change this year is there was always another festival component behind the library in a parking lot, with food trucks and different vendors selling things, entertainment for kids, a bouncy, and a second stage,” LeRose said. Festival organizers are moving that part of the festival from the library parking lot into the Imperial commuter lot, which is downstairs from the Levitt. “It’s a much larger footprint — people won’t feel as cramped in there and it allows us to spread everything out and bring in more of the attractions,” he added. “Instead of just sticking musicians under a tent, we have a proper stage for our second stage. It will sound better and look better. We are able to do more with the kids’ area. There will be more to do and more to see,” he said.
The Imperial Jam, intends to be more appealing to a variety of ages by featuring music on two stages, including a Kids Stage, a Bounce Park, Touch-a-Truck, airbrush tattoos, food vendors, pie- and rib-eating contests, a BBQ competition, cooking demonstrations and more.
The annual BBQ Competition on Sept. 1 will feature wings, pulled pork, ribs, chicken and dessert. The list of food vendors is diverse, ranging from lobster rolls and pizza to Greek, Mexican and Italian food.
While the festival has grown, the festival has stayed true to its roots to promote the downtown business area. “I started the festival 11 years ago. As a member of downtown merchants, we were looking for a way to get more people to come to downtown and thought it would be a good to have a musical and food festival.”
A Saturday pass is $55, Sunday pass is $45 or $90 for the whole weekend. Imperial Jam-only tickets are $15. The Levitt Pavilion is at 40 Jesup Road. For more information, visit BluesViewsandBBQ.com.