Kern Pioneer Village will open the newly restored boyhood home of country music legend Merle Haggard on April 9. Thanks to the generous support of the Cynthia Lake Charitable Trust, the project will be showcased at the first Haggard Boxcar Festival which will include live music by Ben & Noel Haggard, Merle Haggard’s sons. The Strangers, Merle’s band, will accompany them.
Music by Johnny Owens & the Buck Fever Band, James Carothers, food sellers, craft vendors and guided tours of the Haggard House will also be on hand for the day.
Tours of the Haggard Family Boxcar Home will be led by Kern Pioneer Village Curator of Collections Lori Wear and volunteer docents.
The mainstage lineup is scheduled as follows:
James Carothers from Noon to 1:30 p.m.
Johnny Owens & The Buck Fever Band from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Ben & Noel Haggard featuring The Strangers from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Other local country artists will perform at various times and locations around Pioneer Village during the festival.
In addition to music festival and boxcar, attendees can visit the historic Chamber of Commerce building which houses The Bakersfield Sound exhibit and new Aera Energy Gallery. Wear will curate a special collection of Merle Haggard and Bakersfield Sound photographs and artifacts to be located throughout the building.
Tickets to this event are $20. Pre-sale tickets can be purchased by calling Kern Pioneer Village at (661) 437-3330 now through April 7. Tickets will also be available for purchase the day of the event. To ease the line, gates will open at 11:30 a.m. with the event officially starting at noon.
More information about the Haggard Boxcar Festival can be found at www.boxcarfest.org and www.kernpioneer.org.