SeaWorld Bands, Brew & BBQ concerts: Gladys Knight, Smash Mouth lead 2016 lineup
While SeaWorld and Busch Gardens are sister parks, they take different approaches to announcing their spring concert series.
Busch Gardens' Food & Wine Festival -- formerly known as Bands, Brew & BBQ -- announced almost all of its 2016 lineup at once. SeaWorld's concert series -- which is still known as Bands, Brew & BBQ -- announces its lineup week by week.
A lot of this has to do with Blackfish, the 2013 documentary that lambasted SeaWorld's treatment of orcas, and created a P.R. nightmare for the parks, especially as musicians tripped over themselves scrambling to back out of scheduled performances at the parks. Today, Busch Gardens' concert series has a new name, and SeaWorld takes a more cautious approach to announcing its lineup, in part so artists don't have to face so much public pressure to drop out.
Today, we finally know the names of the first two performers in SeaWorld's 2016 Bands, Brew & BBQ lineup, which kicks off this weekend in Orlando. Pop-rockers Smash Mouth will take the stage there on Feb. 13, and soul legend Gladys Knight will perform on Feb. 14. The event also features beer and barbecue for purchase (including samplers for $20 and up), a display of Harley-Davidson motorcycles and more. Concerts begin at 4 p.m. and are free with park admission, though reserved seats are available for $24-$40.
SeaWorld's Bands, Brew & BBQ concert series runs weekends through March 6. Look for each weekend's lineup to be announced that week. Click here for details.
-- Jay Cridlin