RICHLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — An estimated 20,000 people are expected to attend the Luke Bryan Farm Tour Concert in Kalamazoo County Friday night.
On Thursday, crews brought in equipment, set up tents and prepared the parking areas.
Richland Township Clerk Bear Priest says the organizers of the event are taking extra precautions in response to the recent outbreak in southwest Michigan of the rare but sometimes deadly mosquito-borne Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus.
The field was sprayed for mosquitoes this week, but people are also advised to take their own precautions.
“It has been sprayed but we do recommend everybody wear long sleeves, long pants, and use insect repellent with DEET,” Priest said.
The stage will arrive the morning of the concert and crews will work throughout the day to have everything in place when parking opens at 2 p.m.
Kalamazoo County Sheriff Richard Fuller says a parking plan is in place and officials are asking people to view the entrance map before they arrive.
>>PDF: Traffic map
“If you’re one of the earlier people in, you’ll be one of the later people out just because of the way the parking lots are set up,” Fuller said.
The sheriff is recommending most people enter off of M-89 on 30th Street because that where most of the entrances are, which should allow people to move faster into the parking lots.
“We’re just asking people to have patience when you get there follow the signs, please follow the direction of the deputies,” Fuller said.
The township clerk said it could take more than two hours for every car to get out of the parking lot.
Concertgoers are keeping a close eye on rain in the forecast, as only small umbrellas are allowed.
“They took the corn out about a month ago and planted a cover crop and that’s come in really well, and that’s some of the parking area, so I think that will alleviate any mud issues,” Priest said.
Township officials say if you do bring folding chairs and blankets, you will have to sit farther back from the stage.
“On the Luke Bryan website, it says small backpacks are allowed but our local sheriff’s department has said no backpacks are allowed into the concert venue,” Priest said.
The Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office has released a list (PDF) of what you can and cannot bring to the event.