With record attendance of 115,000, Rodney Atkins closes KCQ Country Music Fest

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By Jessica Shepherd  www.mlive.com

SAGINAW, MI — Just before the KCQ Country Music Fest came to its climax and Rodney Atkins took the stage, organizers had an announcement to share.

Morning show duo Barb Sheltraw and Jim Kramer told the sea of people in attendance Saturday, June 20, at Ojibway Island that they had helped break a record for the most attendees ever at a KCQ Country Music Fest.

Approximately 115,000 people had showed up, they explained.

Kramer asked the crowd if they should hold the event again in 2016 for the 25th year.

“If we do, will you bring 5,000 friends so we can have 120,000,” Kramer said.

As Sheltraw and Kramer left the stage, Atkins appeared to an uproar of applause from fans as far from the stage as the eye could see.

Atkins went right into his song “Farmer’s Daughter” and followed that up with other hits such as “He’s Mine” and “Take a Back Road.”

Pausing the music to chat with the audience, Atkins expressed his excitement at the size of the crowd.

“Saginaw,” Atkins proclaimed. “This is incredible, you guys.

“This is definitely a highlight of a long time.”

His set was the end to another successful year of the festival.

With warnings of thunderstorms earlier in the week, WKCQ lucked out again with blue skies and sunshine. It’s still only rained once in the event’s 24 years.

The day was also a success for five nonprofits that received donations from the event’s sponsor, Frankenmuth Credit Union.

A representative from the financial institution handed out $2,000 checks to five charities selected by their members.

The United Way of Saginaw County, the Frankenmuth Farmers Market, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Alzheimer’s Association and the CAN Council Great Lakes Bay Region all accepted donations on the Ojibway Island stage.

Check back around April of 2016 at 98fmkcq.com for information on next year’s event, if they do decide to go for 25 years.