Country Jam

Festival-goers walk down the dusty roadways of the Headwaters Country Jam last summer.

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A three-day country music festival in Three Forks has been postponed because of concerns over the coronavirus.

Headwaters Country Jam will start August 20 rather than next month, according to the concert’s website and Facebook page.

The website said concertgoers’ tickets will be valid for the new dates. Those who can’t make the new dates can visit the concert’s website for details on how to request a refund.

The concert’s postponement comes days after Montana Gov. Steve Bullock announced the state would move into the second stage of reopening on June 1. Under phase two, the state will allow gatherings of up to 50 people as long as social distancing could be practiced and organizers work with public health officials on safety protocols.

Gil Cunningham, president of the company that throws the concert, said he didn’t want to push it back a year, and he’s optimistic about August.

“We felt like, by then, Montana would be in phase three (of reopening). People would be champing at the bit to get back to the music scene,” Cunningham said.

He said concert organizers have also been talking with the county health department and developed a preliminary sanitation plan to keep people safe. That list includes providing sanitizer, having staff wash their hands and constantly cleaning the venue — particularly the food and beverage concessions stands.

“Management wanted to make sure they felt comfortable that we could proceed with the event,” Cunningham said.

He said two artists from the concert’s original lineup were unable to make the new dates. Cunningham said he’d likely bring them back for next year’s show.

Cunningham said Montana loves country music and that this year’s lineup has a lot of rising and established stars.

“I think the lineup is probably one the best lineups we’ve had in a while. We’re really excited about that,” he said.

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Freddy Monares can be reached at fmonares@dailychronicle.com or at 406-582-2630.