The blues are returning to Riverhead.
An outdoor blues festival called “Blues by the River” in the new town square is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 9 from noon to 6 pm, according to the festival website. Gates open at 10:30 a.m. and general admission tickets are $35. Fans 12 years and older require tickets, but kids 11 years old or younger get in free.
Kerry Kearney and the Kings of Kerry Kearney and the Kings of Psychedelia — featuring Michael Falzarano — are set to headline the lineup, which also includes Lex Grey and the Urban Pioneers, Gene Casey and the Lone Sharks, Jack Licitra and the South Bay Soul and Kane Daily and the Roadhouse Dawgs.
For years, beginning in 1998, the Riverhead Blues & Music Festival drew huge crowds to downtown Riverhead. The event was initially run by downtown’s Business Improvement District before the Council for the Vail-Leavitt Music Hall took it over.
The festival brought 11,000 people to downtown Riverhead in. 2006, which is when the event starting running as a fundraiser for the historic theater on Peconic Ave.
The original blues festival, which was the nonprofit theater’s largest fundraising event, was discontinued after Vail-Leavitt lost more than $8,700 on the 2012 event.
Pets, backpacks, as well as large bags, outside food and drink and coolers are prohibited, according to the festival website, which also notes that drugs, including marijuana, are not welcome. ADA registered service animals will be allowed.
The rain date for the event is Sunday, Sept. 10.