Concertgoers flood Cincinnati for three nights of The Cincinnati Music Festival

CINCINNATI — Tens of thousands of people were in town for Cincinnati Music Festival last weekend. It’s a tradition that spans 55 years here in The Queen City. Soul legend Al Green headlined Friday’s concert, while Snoop Dogg headlined Saturday’s lineup.

Organizers said this is one of Cincinnati’s biggest tourism weekends with 90,000 people expected to fill up restaurants, hotels and Paycor Stadium. The event brings in visitors from all over the country.

Dawnette Chess made the trip from Chicago. She said it was her first Cincinnati Music Festival experience.

“I hear about it all the time,” Chess said. “People from Chicago come here, everybody comes.”

Chess went to Thursday night’s concert and explored the “Vibe Marketplace” at Fountain Square on Friday. “It’s been great. The hospitality’s been great. I’ve enjoyed it,” she said.

Over at Fountain Square, visitors can also check out “Cincy Soul: The Black Taste” featuring food and drinks from local minority-owned eateries.

“This is what makes Cincinnati so special — when we’re on the greatest stage, when we’re hosting folks from around the country and hosting as a cultural center,” said Mayor Aftab Pureval.

People may come for the music, but visitors said they’re excited to explore what the Queen City has to offer.

“We plan on doing some sightseeing and of course eating, trying some local foods,” said India Queen, who is visiting from D.C.

“I see that there’s the Underground Railroad Museum and then I just want to see some of the historical things in Ohio,” said Shavonne Shanks from Houston.

The Cincinnati Black Music Walk of Fame also has its grand opening on Saturday. It will feature the 2023 induction ceremony, guided tours and a free concert by the Ohio players.

According to event organizers, the music festival is expected to generate $107 million for the local economy.

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