Fans score free tickets to Kenny Chesney beach concert in Wildwood

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Hundreds of screaming Kenny Chesney fans lined up outside the Wildwoods Convention Center this morning to try to secure free concert tickets.

 The line of fans stretched for four blocks on the boardwalk, from Davis to Roberts avenues. Some had camped out as early as 7:30 a.m. to await the announcement that the country singer would be performing June 20 on the beach behind Mariner’s Landing Pier in Wildwood.

Rumors were flying yesterday that Chesney would be performing a free concert, and Cat Country announced yesterday that it would be giving out tickets for a “major event.” When Cat Country radio personalities officially confirmed it at 10 a.m. Thursday on the boardwalk, the announcement was met with cheers.

Not everyone on line was able to receive tickets.

Representatives from Cat Country orchestrated a game of chance in which each fan wishing to win tickets dropped a poker chip into a vertical maze. If the chip landed in a prize slot, they won a voucher for two tickets to the concert. If it landed in a blank slot, they walked away empty-handed.

Sixty pairs of tickets were given out at the Wildwoods Convention Center.

Melissa Fowler of Wildwood said she was in line by 8 a.m.

“I’m shaking. I’m so excited,” she said.
“I kind found out yesterday from what everyone was saying,” she said, “so I came to wait for the tickets.”

Wildwood Mayor Ernie Troiano said plans for the concert have been in the works for three or four weeks. He said Chesney wanted to host a free concert on a beach in New Jersey with a boardwalk, and the choice came down to Seaside Heights or Wildwood.

When Chesney representatives saw Wildwood’s expansive beaches, they were sold, the mayor said.

“It’s a good thing,” Trioano said. “It’s something we’ve been trying to do for a long time.”

He said the last time a beach concert like this was held in Wildwood was 1991.

Troiano said that upwards of 15,000 tickets will be given away for the concert.

“We’re always trying to compete with Atlantic City and the casinos,” Troiano said. “This says that Wildwood is a venue that has to be reckoned with.”

He said there are a lot of country fans in the South Jersey area, so it makes sense to bring the concert to Wildwood.

“This is one of the biggest things to happen to the island in a lot of years,” Troiano said. “We’re excited.”

The event is sponsored by American Express and Cat Country, he said.

Tickets were available online for American Express cardholders, and Cat Country will be giving away more this weekend.  

Christie Rotondo can be emailed at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or you can comment on this story at Chesney-1 Chesney-2

Related: Kenny Chesney heading to Wildwood? 

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