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Mississippi Valley Blues Festival returns

The festival returns Sept. 17-18 to its original location at LeClaire Park and Bandshell.

DAVENPORT, Iowa — The Mississippi Valley Blues Festival is back Friday, Sept.17 and Saturday, Sept.18.

Historically, the festival happened over the July 4 weekend, but the annual event has gone through a lot of challenges over the last couple of years. 

In 2019, the flood along the Mississippi River washed out its usual location, LeClaire Park, and forced it to temporarily change the location to East Moline. Then, the festival was cancelled entirely in 2020 due to the on-going pandemic.

Now, the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival returns to Davenport at the LeClaire Park and Bandshell. 

Due to the high risk of flooding in the summer, the Mississippi Valley Blues Society had reconsider the original location and date of the festival. 

"We just couldn't keep planning for an event in that Independence Day timeframe because every time we move out of the park, our costs double and attendance goes down," President Bob Clevenstine said. "Rather than it be a fundraiser we would lose money (on) ... for our own survival, we had to find a different date."

The change of date hasn't seemed to affect attendance. The festival normally had between 1,500 and 2,000 attendees, but this year's presale tickets already hit well over 1,000 sales. 

"We decided to try to find a different date or a different venue for the blues fest. After surveying our membership, we found out people really prefer the venue as much as the date, so we shopped around found this weekend in September," Clevenstine said. "Now, we're back. We're back on the riverfront at historic LeClaire Park."

Presale tickets are no longer available, but tickets will be available for sale at the event. 

For more information, visit the festival's website here.