HUNTSVILLE — Thousands of visitors are expected to flock across S.R. 63 here this weekend, as this quiet town of 1,234 swells to become the northern Cumberland Plateau's largest city for White Knuckle Event.
The annual Memorial Day weekend festival, organized by Brimstone, is expected to draw several thousand ATV enthusiasts from across the United States, some of them arriving in town earlier this week before the real rush begins today (Thursday).
Festivities begin early Friday, centered around the courthouse mall in downtown Huntsville and Brimstone's Vanderpool Event Area on River Road south of town, with a peak in activity expected Saturday before most of the visitors begin to file out of town on Sunday.
This year's event will be headlined by country music star Lee Brice, who will take center stage at around dusk on Saturday. Opening for Brice will be Michael Ray, who will take the stage at 8 p.m.
Brice is the singer of a string of hit singles, including songs like "Parking Lot Party" and "Drinking Crowd." His latest single, "Boy," a heartwarming ballad with a personal touch, was released last week and is quickly becoming an internet sensation.
The Saturday night concert will cap a full day of activities at Brimstone, which will include mud bogs and other competitions.
As is always the case, law enforcement will be ramped up for the weekend. The heightened visibility from both local and state agencies will focus primarily on intoxicated drivers along S.R. 63 and on River Road, particularly during the evening hours Friday and Saturday.
Tickets for White Knuckle can be purchased at brimstonebands.com.
Separate from Brimstone's event, local sensation Anthony Smith will return to his roots for an acoustic concert at Oneida High School's Performing Arts Center on Friday. Smith's lone studio album — 2002's If That Ain't Country — was a rousing success, but he's especially noteworthy as a songwriter, having recorded songs for some of country music's biggest names, including Tim McGraw, George Strait and Blake Shelton.
Tickets for Friday's event, which begins at 7 p.m., are $20 at the door.