4th Annual Rock The South Has Fans Singing a High Note

Noah Chandler/CullmanSense

CULLMAN – Country music wafted through the humid atmosphere during the inaugural day of the Rock the South music festival. Starting at noon and stretching late into ​night, Cullman residents and out of town guests packed into Heritage Park to experience an assorted group of talented musicians.

Jordan Hailes and girlfriend Brittany Beaird drove all the way from Gadsden, Ala. to see Brantley Gilbert. “I love country music and beer,” Hailes said. “This is my second year, it always improves.”  “It’s always a lot of fun!” Beaird claimed. 

James Cheeat from Florence, Ala. was at the festival with his daughter Anna Grace. “This is our first time ever to come to Rock the South. I’m very excited about seeing all the musicians,” Cheeats said. “My daughter is excited about seeing Brantley Gilbert, and I’m excited about seeing living legend Alan Jackson. And seeing Travis Tritt and Sarah Evans tomorrow. We’re staying at Smith Lake campground park and staying all weekend! Everybody come to Cullman, have a great time, roll tide and God bless.” 
Tom and Kim Helsper from Decatur, Ala. expressed their reasons for being at Rock the South, “To see the artists, Alan Jackson, mainly. Just all the music, all the artists really, Sarah Evans too. This is our first time, so we didn’t know what to expect.”  

Annabeth Alexander, Scarlett Johnson, and Bailey Vandiver from Muscle Shoals, Ala. were enjoying the Rock the South festivities. They stated, “We came to party and have fun.” All three girls will be here the whole weekend and claimed they were looking forward to hearing Brantley Gilbert and Alan Jackson the most.

Julee Butts, a Cullman native, said, “We have been coming to Rock the South for three years now. We gradually moved up all the way from the Platinum to the Ultimate VIP so our kids could meet Brantley Gilbert.” Butts was there with her husband and two children. She also stated, “We’re just proud we have this in Cullman. We look forward to it someday being a three-day event. The recognition coming to our town, I think that’ll help our town grow.” Butts and her husband own Alabama Contracting services and are considering sponsoring Rock the South next year.

Dillon Daseur from Huntsville, Ala. stated, “A bunch of my buddies asked me to come and have a good time. So I said I’d come and hang out. This is my first time at Rock the South. I look forward to meeting some new people. Some new friends and having a good time this weekend.”

Jennifer and Kent Clements from Biloxi Mississippi stated, “We drove two and a half hours.” Pointing at her husband, Jennifer claimed, “He likes Big Smo and Tyler Farr.” 

In addition to music, there were also several informational tents, including the United States Marine Corp. The Corp presented a pull-up bar and offered any passerby the chance to see just how strong they thought they were. Jasper resident, Nathan Alexander, tried his hand at it and managed 13 pull ups. “A buddy of mine I graduated high school with is in the Marines,” Alexander said. “I just thought it was cool to do something for the Marines and represent it.” 

Gunnery Sergeant, Field, stated, “It’s for a pull-up challenge for public awareness about what the Marine Corp. has to offer. We’re giving away some incentive items like T-shirts, banners, and water bottles. This is our first time; I like the event; the weather’s great, a nice crowd of people.  To join the Marines you can go to marines.com or call 1-800-Marines. You can put in your information, and a recruiter will contact you.”

The conclusion of the first half of Rock the South 2015 had fans energized and ready to come back for another day of music, food, fun, and beer.