Buckeye Country Superfest will take a hiatus in 2018 despite having drawn hundreds of thousands of people to Columbus since 2015.
The decision not to hold the two-day event at Ohio Stadium this summer was made in an attempt to keep the show from losing its spark.
“We’ve had the biggest headliners in country music,” said Gary O’Brien, director of communications and program development at the Schottenstein Center. “It takes a unique act to be able to headline a football stadium. They have to be at a certain level, and there’s only so many of them.”
O’Brien said the venue has always been part of the event’s appeal.
The Shoe’s past renovations also have worked to make the “iconic structure” better suited for concerts, O’Brien said. Since the first concert at Ohio Stadium –– Pink Floyd’s 1988 “Momentary Lapse of Reason” tour –– the venue has been a prime spot for summer shows, including The Rolling Stones, U2 and One Direction.
In the past three years, Buckeye Country Superfest has brought to campus more than 200,000 people and artists such as Zac Brown Band, Keith Urban and Luke Bryan. For O’Brien, it’s important that the event maintains the draw for artists of this caliber so audiences are willing to “travel great distances in great numbers.”
Artist availability and popularity will continue to affect if and when the event returns, but O’Brien said it is likely that the festival will be back in 2019.
“[Time off] will be a good thing,” O’Brien said. “We don’t want people to be tired of it.”