Hodag Country Festival
The Hodag Country Festival, founded in 1978, is an outdoor music festival held each summer in Rhinelander, in Oneida County, Wisconsin, United States. The first festival, held August 4–6, 1978, featured Freddy Fender and Jana Jae and had an attendance of about 500. It is named for the folkloric Hodag, first reported to exist in 1893 in Rhinelander.
The "Hodag" was founded by Bernie and Diane Eckert, Ernie Feight, and Ted Tschannen. Tschannen left after about two years, while Feight was part of the festival until 1994, when he sold his shares to the four Eckert children and the festival became an Eckert family business. After Bernie and Diane Eckert's deaths in 2002 and 2008, their children have operated the festival.
Held the second weekend in July, the festival has an estimated attendance of 30,000-50,000 each year. Popular country music stars have performed, including Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, Reba McEntire, Neal McCoy, Kellie Pickler and Toby Keith.
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