CULLMAN, Ala. (WIAT) – Over 60,000 people are expected to make their way to Cullman this weekend to celebrate the annual Rock The South Country Music Festival.

Country music fans are traveling from all 50 states this year, according to event officials. Some event attendees told CBS 42 they bought tickets eight months ago.

“We’re pumped,” Rick Stein from San Antonio, Texas said. “ I saw a lot of different states driving up so representing Texas here we go.”

Stein was one of many from across the country that drove to Alabama for the event.

“We left 9 o’clock Wednesday night and got here around 12, 12:30 today,” Chad Evans from Albany, New York said.

Shane Quick is one of the event’s founders from 2011 when tragedy struck downtown on April 27. They worked to help people in a time of need.

“I hope it makes a positive impact on a lot of people,” Quick said. “To be able to do it here at home and know how much it means to many people, there’s way more reward in doing that.”

Now after a year off from COVID, limited capacity last time and a washout weekend, this team says they’re bigger and stronger than ever.

“It’s been a hard three years on all of us,” Quick said. “We deserve to come together and have a good time with each other.”

Organizers are hopeful that those who visit will make memories to last a lifetime and will come back again next year.

“Oh I love the south,” Evans said. “If I could pick up and move here now I’d come down here for sure.”

Event organizers estimate that this one event will have a $15 million impact on the community.

Parking opens at noon Saturday for the second and final day of this country music event.