BRISTOL, Va. (WJHL) – The 2023 Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion begins Friday, and businesses on both the Tennessee and Virginia side of State Street are getting ready for one of their biggest weekends of the year.

“Our downtown merchants work year-round to prepare for this weekend, and really the economic impact that it has on our downtown merchants, that and Christmas combined really carries them through for those slow months,” said Maggie Elliot, the executive director of Believe in Bristol.” So it’s really an important thing for our downtown community.” 

Each year, the Birthplace of Country Music’s festival draws thousands of people to Bristol to enjoy live music. The 2023 festival runs Sept. 8-10 and features a lineup of acts like Nickel Creek, Margo Price, Bruce Hornsby & the Noisemakers and 49 Winchester. A full lineup is available online.

Elliot told News Channel 11 that downtown restaurants and bars tend to see the most positive economic impact from the festival, but retailers also see a massive boon.

“Believe in Bristol works hand in hand with Birthplace of Country Music and Rhythm & Roots to make it as streamlined for our downtown merchants as possible,” Elliot said. “So we help them obviously be as informed as they possibly can of what streets are going to be closed, when what tents are going up, how can they get to their buildings and their businesses during the weekend. So it’s a really a team effort, and we’re happy to be a part of it.”  

Tickets are available online for single days or the full weekend. To learn more about the festival, click here.