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City-wide celebration in Bardstown planned after changes were made to the bourbon festival

It was a bourbon bummer, now it's a Bardstown bash.

BARDSTOWN, Ky. — Every year, the Kentucky Bourbon Festival fills Bardstown with Distillery workers, lots of tourists, and locals.

But this year, for the first time, a limited number of tickets were sold online and they were snapped up quickly. Some Bardstown residents told WHAS11 they didn't know tickets were limited until it was too late. 

Kelly Vega manages the kitchen at Bullitts Winery. She said, "A couple of locals told us that they weren't able to get tickets so we went online and we looked. Tickets were already sold out."

Business owners started to worry they'd lose revenue. Like Stephen Vittitow who owns a speakeasy, a market, and a bed and breakfast in Bardstown. "And I know at least two of the people that made reservations did not have their tickets so they weren't sure what they were going to do," he said.

On Monday, Bardstown tourism brought some relief. 

"Cheers to Bardstown" will take place the same weekend as the Kentucky Bourbon Festival (all days but Sunday). It's hosted by Bardstown tourism, the main street, and the chamber of commerce. 

"We are ready to kick off Cheers to Bardstown with lots of shopping, dining, and an overall unique experience,” added Randi Mouser, Executive Director of Bardstown Main Street Program.

Now, Vittitow said,  "I'm expecting more people this year actually. It's like a wonderful happy ending for what we thought was going to be a nerve-wracking period this year."

The additional festival was made possible by community members stepping up to help out. That includes Steve Stivers, owner of Making Good Scentz.  "What I love about this town is that everybody comes together, it's community-oriented. So when tempers might flare at the end they always tend to rally around something."

Here is the schedule for Cheers to Bardstown


  • Music from 5-8 pm:
    • Old Courthouse: 5-7 pm (Paxton)
    • 1st Block: 5:30-7:30 pm (Max Whitaker )
    • 2nd Block: 6-8 pm (Issac Morgan)


  • Music Lineup:
    • Old Courthouse:
      • 11-1 pm (Jordan Wilson)
      • 2-4 pm (Carly Johnson)
      • 5-7 pm (Ryan Raikes)

1st Block:

10-12 pm (Carly Johnson)

1-3 pm (tba)

3:30-5:30 pm (tba)

6-8 pm (Gracie Yates)

2nd Block:

11:30-1:30 pm (Maxwell Whitaker)

2:30-4:30 pm (Jordan Wilson)

5:30-7:30 pm (Trey Washburn)

Farmers Market:

12-4 pm (WBRT)

5-6 pm (Gracie Yates)

6:30-8 pm (Carly Moffa Band)

8:30-10 pm (County Wide Band)


  • Music Lineup:
    • Old Courthouse
      • 11-1 pm (Matthew Hale)
      • 2-4 pm (Allison Bray)
      • 5-7 pm (Zach Mosgrove)

1st Block:

10-12 pm (tba)

        • pm (Zach Mosgrove- $0.00)

3:30-5:30 ( chance Danison)

6-8 (Kenzi Lewis)

2nd Block:

11:30-1:30 pm (tba)

2-4 pm (Matthew Hale)

5:30-7:30 (Chance Danison)

Farmers Market

12-4 pm (WBRT)

5-6 pm (Allison Bray)

6:30-8 pm (Les Masters Band)

8:30-10 pm (Jordan Wilson Coalition Band)

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