What you need to know about the 2018 Riverbend Festival

Photo: WTVC

It's time once again for Chattanooga to throw a 9-day party down by the river.

Riverbend Festival organizers hope you're ready for a good time and have your wristband to catch some top of the line artists, as well as discover a few that are on their way up.

Here's a look at each night's main events:

To see a full list of Riverbend's events, visit their website.

New at Riverbend this year:

  • For the first time ever, they will be offering discount admission wristbands and tokens at Food City and Harry's Convenience Store locations.
  • They will feature star seating available in the Starview Landing, which includes not only a prized view of performers, but exclusive options to purchase food and cocktails and restrooms. The premier package also includes a parking pass.
  • The TVFCU Stage under the Walnut Street Bridge will be a Cool Zone, where jet-engine technology and misting tents will cool the area.
  • Chattanooga Hot Tubs and Swim Spas will be offering a spot for ten lucky people to enjoy the festival in the Starview Landing Michael Phelps style - in a pool.
  • The Bud Light Stage will have a late show on June 8, 9 and 16 from 10:30 p.m. to midnight.

There also will be a Riverbend Shuttle available every day of the festival except for Monday, June 11 for the Bessie Smith Strut. The seven pick up locations are: Finley Stadium, Chattanooga Choo Choo, YMCA-6th Street, Broad Street and 10th, Market Street and Houston, West 11th Street and Carter, 7th Street and Chestnut. Each ride is $1.

Before heading to Riverbend, here are some important things to know:

  • Attendees cannot purchase anything inside the festival with cash-only tokens. They can be purchased at booths located throughout the festival.
  • Gates will open at 5:00 p.m. nightly. No chairs will be allowed in until then.
  • Wristbands must be scanned upon entering the festival and exiting. Not scanning out may mean you can't get back in.
  • Smoking is only allowed in one of the seven designated smoking areas.
  • Performances will happen - rain or shine - but are subject to change. There are no refunds regardless of the cancellation of events.
  • Shirt and shoes are required.
  • Umbrellas are allowed.
  • Anyone consuming alcohol must have an age verification wristband and valid drivers license.

What not to do at Riverbend 2018:

  • Don't bring backpacks. All other bags will be searched.
  • Don't bring pets
  • No bikes, skateboards, scooters, roller blades, or laser pointers
  • No coolers, picnic supplies, glass bottles, or outside food/drinks
  • Don't put your chairs in a spot BEFORE gates open
  • Don't leave anything for the next day
  • No camcorders or audio equipment - cameras are permitted, but may be restricted in some areas.
  • No guns allowed (see more here)

To see a full list of all Riverbend policies, visit their website.

And if you're planning to enjoy the festival from the Tennessee River, make sure to follow these rules:

  • Boaters must use navigational lights and anchor lights
  • All vessels are required to have a Type B fire extinguisher
  • All vessels must have at least one wearable USCG-approved life jacket per person
  • Blood-alcohol content regulations -- 0.08 percent or higher -- apply to boaters and drivers

NewsChannel 9 plans extensive coverage of the Riverbend festival, starting with a roadshow in our 5:30 p.m. newscast Friday.