Country Thunder 2017: What Calgary concertgoers need to know

Country Thunder kicks of in Calgary
WATCH: Leslie Horton joins us from Prairie Winds Park to preview this year's Country Thunder.

Calgary’s 2017 Country Thunder music festival is fast approaching with performers like Blake Shelton and Brad Paisley set to take the stage.

The festival, which takes place at Prairie Winds Park, starts on Friday, Aug. 18 and runs through until Sunday, Aug. 20.

LISTEN: How organizers are preparing for Country Thunder as it enters its second year

Here’s some details to help Calgary concertgoers make the most of their western weekend:

Who’s performing at Country Thunder 2017

Performers at Country Thunder 2017 include Blake Shelton, Thomas Rhett, Brad Paisley, Old Dominion, Dallas Smith, Randy Houser, High Valley, Terri Clark, The Road Hammers and The Washboard Union, just to name a few.

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“We understand that it’s the headline acts that get fans buying tickets,” Country Thunder Music Festival General Manager Kim Blevins said in a news release. “But it’s the overall experience and vibe that keeps them coming back year after year.”

What’s new this year

“In addition to the major renovations at the park, and improvements to our service model, there’s also a number of new food and beverage options, games, activations, and retailers on-site this year,” Blevins said.

How to get there

Parking is extremely limited at Prairie Winds Park. The festival encourages concertgoers to leave their car at home and take transit if possible.

According to the festival, best bets for getting to and from Prairie Winds Park are the Westwinds LRT and the Ranchman’s Country Thunder Express bus shuttles (free with Country Thunder wristband).

When leaving, there is a taxi pickup on Westwinds Crescent N.E. and a ride share pickup near the Superstore parking lot.

Alcohol and outside food or beverages

No outside food and beverages are allowed into the festival area. To purchase alcoholic beverages, you must first visit the Alcohol ID booth to present your identification and receive a wristband.

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Items that are allowed:

  • Backpacks (medium)
  • Hats
  • Sunblock
  • Lighters
  • Sunglasses
  • One Unopened Bottle of Water
  • 12 & Under Free (except in the Reserved or Platinum areas)
  • Fanny Packs
  • Digital Cameras (non professional)
  • Disposable Cameras
  • Film Cameras (non professional)
  • Blanket or tarp
  • Soft Lawn Chairs

Items that aren’t allowed:

  • Instruments
  • Knives/Weapons
  • Chains/Chain Wallets
  • Outside Food or Beverage (into venue)
  • Camelpacks
  • Tents in Venue
  • Flags in venue
  • Refunds or Exchanges
  • Video Cameras
  • Audio Recording Devices
  • Flasks
  • Professional Cameras
  • Pets
  • Drugs or Drug Paraphernalia
  • Coolers in Venue
  • Laser Pointers
  • Excess Baggage
  • Umbrellas
  • Chinese Lanterns

Food vendors:

Craving a corn dog or some pizza? Food vendors are open 12 p.m.-11 p.m., according to the Country Thunder website.

Vendors include (but are not limited to) The Dogg Father, Ms. Mac and Cheese, Vasili’s, Mardi Gras Grill, Spudmobeel, Sticky Ricky’s, Homestead – Best Burgers In The West, Family Squeeze Lemonade and Pizza 73.

All food and beverage vendors at Country Thunder accept credit cards as well as the food and drink tickets available on-site.

Retail vendors

From body painting and cowboy hats to henna tattoos and clothing, vendors are set up to sell concert-goers a wide range of souvenirs.

ATM locations

ATM Services are available on-site throughout the festival grounds. If you need help locating one you’re asked to visit the Information Booth.

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Medical help or first aid

If you require medical help, there is an on-site medic team that can assist you. 


Country Thunder tickets available at or order by phone by calling 1-866-388-0007.