Thousands enjoy BBQ and music festival in downtown Tyler - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Thousands enjoy BBQ and music festival in downtown Tyler

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TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Barbecue took over the downtown square in Tyler Saturday for the Red Dirt BBQ and Music Festival. This is the first time festival has happened in East Texas.

Local bands kicked off the festival, which was expected to bring in around three thousand people.

Whiskey Myers and The Randy Rogers Band are set to perform Saturday tonight and some of the featured restaurants traveled more than five hours to participate in the festival.

"I was like we've got to go. This is going to be a big party. You've got Randy Rogers headlining," said co-owner of Schmidt Family Barbecue Chad Franks. "You've got the top 15 barbecue joints in Texas, which means in the world. So, we were just real appreciative and real humble to be part of it."

Chad Franks and his family drove five and a half hours to participate in the festival Saturday and it was the family's first time coming to East Texas.

"We're ready to bring some central barbecue to East Texas," Franks said. "Everyone has been so hospitable here."

Tickets sold out earlier this week, but organizers say this festival will be back. They plan on making this an annual event.

"We really felt like Tyler needed something that celebrated the best of Texas in barbecue and music," Chase Colston with Townsquare Media said. "To be able to bring that back for years to come is something we're really looking forward to doing."

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