Mumford & Sons Selects Two National Trust for Historic Preservation Main Street Communities for its Summer Tour

Tour to Highlight Towns’ Local Businesses, History, Food and Culture and Support their Revitalization

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is pleased to announce two Main Street communities have been selected by Mumford & Sons for its four-stop Gentlemen of the Road Stopover tour in August. This internationally acclaimed band from the U.K. will be playing in Bristol, Virginia/Tennessee and in Dixon, Illinois. The two other tour locations are Portland, Maine, and Monterey, California.

Each Stopover is a one-day, outdoor concert featuring multiple acts and headlined by Mumford & Sons that is expected to draw more than 10,000 people to each location. Both Bristol and Dixon’s Main Street programs will receive a percentage of tickets sales to aid with their revitalization efforts and have worked out agreements to channel additional revenue from the shows and after parties. 

In a statement released today, the band said, “We want to stop off in towns where bands don't usually tour, and celebrate the people, food, and music that make them special. We’re keen to promote the town’s local businesses, and we’ll be using the local bars and venues for after-show parties, whilst working closely with the local people to get everyone involved in making these shows spectacular.”

“Local Main Street programs make their downtowns wonderful places to live and visit because they celebrate their communities’ heritage, architecture, small businesses, and sense of place,” says Doug Loescher, director of the National Trust Main Street Center. “We were so impressed that Mumford & Sons appreciate these special places and wanted to bring their event to some of our communities as an alternative to large venues sitting in the middle of suburban sprawl. When such a visible group from outside of our industry is attracted to our Main Street communities, it is a huge validation for the revitalization of our historic places and speaks volumes to the value of protecting our historic communities.”

Representatives for the band contacted the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s National Trust Main Street Center earlier this year for help in identifying interesting downtowns with the infrastructure in place to accommodate large numbers of visitors, and compelling local history. The National Trust Main Street Center has a network of more than 1100 communities throughout the U.S. that are using the Main Street Four-Point Approach® and volunteer leadership to turn their historic downtowns into vibrant, livable communities.

Bristol, Tennessee/Virginia

Regarded as the birthplace of country music, Bristol is rich in music history. Producer Ralph Peer began recording music there in 1927 because of its proximity to so many iconic musicians whose roots were firmly planted in rural mountain traditions.

“Something of this magnitude for any Main Street program is amazing. We are so stoked to have this group come to our little community,” says Christina Blevins, the executive director of Believe in Bristol, the local Main Street program for this downtown that shares a border with Tennessee and Virginia. “The whole reason why they are coming here is because we came together as a community and embrace our musical heritage. Every night we have live music.”

Dixon, Illinois

Dixon is the smallest stop on the tour. Just two hours away from Chicago, it began as a trading post along the Rock River and has a colorful and long outlaw history thanks to its surrounding forest lands that served as excellent hideouts.

“Part of the reason why they loved our downtown is because of the architecture and the way we are nestled on the river. Our downtown was recently listed on the National Register for Historic Places in March, and now this is happening, so it has been an amazing year for us,” says Josh Albrecht, the director of Dixon Main Street. “We’ve had 5,000 people here for an event, and to have three times that in a town of 16,000… this just doesn’t happen. We are so blessed.”

Tickets are available exclusively at www.gentlemenoftheroad.com and go on sale for Dixon on June 9 and on June 1st for the other three Stopovers.

 

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places.
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