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CMA Fest Delayed After Thunderstorms Sweep Through Tennessee

After a thunderstorm causes power outages and delays at CMA Fest, relief is finally on the way as the storm subsides.

Singer Chris Stapleton performs at the 2018 CMA Fest
Singer Chris Stapleton performs at the 2018 CMA Fest. Credit: Shutterstock

A line of strong to severe thunderstorms swept through the Middle Tennessee area just as CMA Fest was drawing to a close in Nashville. Due to the threat of severe weather, outdoor stages were shut down beginning just after 2 p.m. Sunday. Another line of storms rolled through the area between 5 and 7 p.m., causing power outages and further disruptions.

At least 4,000 Nashville Electric Service (NES) customers were without power as of 7:15 p.m. following damaging winds. However, the number of customers affected began to decrease from the peak outage of around 6 p.m., with approximately 4,000 customers still affected by 7:15 p.m. NES crews were working diligently to restore power to the affected areas.

The severe thunderstorm warning for Davidson County was canceled by the National Weather Service around 6:20 p.m., just ten minutes before it was set to expire. However, the county remained under an active severe thunderstorm watch until 10 p.m.

The shelter-in-place order for Nissan Stadium employees, which had been implemented around 5 p.m., was lifted around 6:50 p.m. This allowed for the preparations to resume and gates to open at 7:30 p.m. The CMA Fest show was expected to start approximately at 8:15 p.m. Festival officials expressed gratitude for the patience of attendees and expressed their excitement to celebrate the final night of the milestone 50th anniversary celebration.

CMA Fest continued to monitor the severe weather threat throughout the night and provided updates to festival-goers through their official app. The festival urged attendees to have a plan in place and know where to seek shelter in the event of severe weather.

As the severe weather disrupted the final day of CMA Fest, fans and organizers remained hopeful that they would be able to enjoy a full show and festivities as conditions improved. Safety remained a top priority, and attendees were encouraged to stay informed and take necessary precautions.

Despite the severe weather disruptions earlier in the evening, CMA Fest managed to proceed with its final night celebrations at Nissan Stadium in Nashville. The gates opened at 7:30 p.m., and the show commenced at approximately 8:15 p.m., much to the delight of the eager fans.

The National Weather Service says there’s a chance for severe weather Sunday afternoon and evening, June 11, 2023. Credit: National Weather Sevice

Following the stormy weather, which caused power outages and forced the closure of outdoor stages, the situation gradually improved. The number of Nashville Electric Service (NES) customers without power decreased from the peak outage of around 6,000 to approximately 4,000 customers affected by 7:15 p.m. NES crews worked diligently to restore power to the remaining areas still impacted.

As the severe thunderstorm warning for Davidson County was lifted and transitioned into a severe thunderstorm watch until 10 p.m., festival-goers were encouraged to remain vigilant and stay updated on the weather conditions. CMA Fest officials, in close coordination with local authorities and weather services, continued to monitor the situation to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

The festival organizers expressed their gratitude for the patience and understanding of the attendees, who eagerly awaited the final night of the 50th anniversary celebration. Despite the challenges posed by the weather, the resilience and enthusiasm of the fans prevailed, creating an electric atmosphere at Nissan Stadium.

With the disruptions behind them, CMA Fest aimed to deliver a memorable night of music and entertainment, showcasing some of the biggest names in country music. The spirit of celebration and unity remained strong as artists and fans came together to commemorate the milestone event.

As the night unfolded, CMA Fest attendees immersed themselves in the energetic performances, savoring the unique experience of live music in the heart of Nashville. The resilience and determination to make the most of the festival’s final night were evident, as the spirit of country music prevailed over the earlier weather challenges.

As the curtains fell on the 50th anniversary of CMA Fest, the event left a lasting impression, not only as a testament to the enduring spirit of country music but also as a reminder of the resilience and camaraderie shared by its passionate community. The festival’s ability to adapt and overcome the obstacles posed by the weather showcased the unwavering dedication of both organizers and attendees to create a memorable experience.

With the memories of the 50th anniversary edition still fresh, fans and artists alike looked forward to the future, eagerly anticipating the next chapter of CMA Fest and the continued celebration of country music in the years to come.

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