Huntley cancels concert, reschedules free show in Fredericksburg

by | Feb 29, 2024 | ALLFFP, Around Town, Arts and Entertainment, Fredericksburg, Uncategorized

Spotsylvania County country music star Huntley, the winner of season 24 of “The Voice,” announced on social media this week that he canceled a Friday concert at Virginia Credit Union Stadium, home of the Fredericksburg Nationals, in of protest $160 ticket prices. 

Billikens Smokehouse, a barbecue restaurant and music venue on Caroline Street in downtown Fredericksburg, announced Thursday that it will host Huntley instead for a free show on Friday from 7:45-9 p.m. 

Michael Huntley posted on his Facebook page that he would rather perform for free than charge $160 per ticket. 

“Didn’t sit well with my heart and I have to go with my gut and cancel,” Huntley wrote. 

Huntley stated in an accompanying video that the ticket prices were “heavy on my heart and mind” the past few weeks. He said that at Billikens, he’s going to pay the band out of his own funds. 

“I want to put on a good time,” he said. 

The concert at Virginia Credit Union Stadium was set to benefit Loisann’s Hope House. Huntley encouraged concertgoers at Billiken’s to still donate to the Hope House. 

Billikens owners Greg, Sharon and Ashlie Shalawylo put out a public notice about the event in which they stated the restaurant is excited to host Huntley’s first concert in Fredericksburg. 

They noted Billikens has a capacity of 350 people. 

“Once we reach capacity, we will temporarily stop allowing entry,” the owners said. “However, we will be able to allow entry as space becomes available throughout the evening.” 

Billikens will not participate in the city’s First Friday Sip and Stroll activities because of safety concerns. 

The Fredericksburg Police Department is aware of Billikens’ safety plan and pledges to have an additional presence on the streets. The city’s fire marshal and City Council also were updated. Security personnel will be stationed at each entrance and exit of Billikens, conducting wand and bag inspections. No backpacks, drinks or outside food will be allowed on the premises. 

A homecoming celebration for Huntley, including a parade downtown and a pep rally at the stadium, is still scheduled for March 30. 

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