February 27, 2024

Newton to host inaugural country music festival June 18

Wild Cat Country Fest brings all-day music concerts to Fore Seasons

Country music fans in Newton ought to be hootin’ and hollerin’ right about now.

Wild Cat Country Fest is an upcoming all-day country music festival making its official debut June 18 in Newton. Organizers recently announced online that local, regional and national bands are set to perform in the 15-acre, Iowa countryside backdrop at Fore Seasons Golf Bar, 6232 County Highway S74 S.

Dan Nieland, chairperson of Wild Cat Country Fest Foundation Board, said the nonprofit organization’s goal is to promote the city, the county and the quality of life “that we all get to enjoy” in the community. He pitched WCCF as a “country music experience” featuring two stages of about eight or nine bands.

“We do have our three main acts booked, but unfortunately I cannot share that with you yet…That is actually going to take place at high noon, of course, on Feb. 18,” Nieland said during a Feb. 7 presentation to city council members, noting the organization hopes to bring 5,000 to 6,000 people to the area.

Organizers project a “sizable” economic impact to the greater Newton area as a result of WCCF, which will not only host nearly 10 hours of live music the day of the festival but also feature pre-game performances the night before in about three or four venues throughout the city. Shuttles will be made available, too.

“We’re going to be work with different businesses across town. We’re accepting applications for up to four venues that evening to play the same genre of music … It’s going to be more of southern country, southern rock, dirt road country, outlaw country,” Nieland said.

With regional marketing, organizers hope to capitalize on the festival’s proximity to the Des Moines metro, Ames, Iowa City, Marshalltown and Cedar Rapids to draw attendees outside of Jasper County. The nonprofit organization is offering a number of sponsorship packages for contributing businesses and entities.

Eventually, Nieland said the foundation will ask the city to consider contributing a $15,000 sponsorship donation for the festival. Nieland reiterated the foundation is not pocketing any money from the festival and that it is a celebration for the community.

“We’re all about doing what we can for the community,” Nieland said.

For more information, follow WCCF on Facebook at www.facebook.com/wildcatcountryfest.

Contact Christopher Braunschweig at 641-792-3121 ext. 6560 or cbraunschweig@newtondailynews.com

Christopher Braunschweig

Christopher Braunschweig

Christopher Braunschweig has a strong passion for community journalism and covers city council, school board, politics and general news in Newton, Iowa and Jasper County.