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Farm Aid will celebrate its 30th anniversary in Chicago

Zach Long
Written by
Zach Long

Founded in in 1985 by Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young, the very first Farm Aid benefit concert was held in Champaign, IL, raising money for American family farmers. Thirty years later, the event is returning to Chicago with a day-long concert at FirstMerit Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island on September 19. The last time Farm Aid was in town, the concert celebrated its 20th anniversary in Tinley Park, with performances from Wilco and Buddy Guy as well as a speaking appearance by then-senator Barack Obama.

This year, the all-day food and music festival will feature performances by Farm Aid board members Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Dave Matthews in addition to sets from Imagine Dragons, Jack Johnson, Kacey Musgraves, Mavis Staples, Old Crow Medicine Show, Holly Williams, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Insects vs Robots and Blackwood Quartet. Attendees will also be able to enjoy family-farmed organic foods in the event's HOMEGROWN Village, where farmers from all over the country will speak with guests, offering samples of their wares and hosting demonstrations.

Tickets for Farm Aid 30 will go on sale at 10am CDT on August 3, with prices ranging from $49.50 to $189.50 (before fees, naturally). If you can't make it out to the show, you'll be able catch a live webcast of the concert on

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