Ben Prestage takes his boots off to play for the crowd at last year’s event. [ Wendy Weitzel | The Star ]
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Blues on Reid to liven downtown Port St. Joe this weekend

In a few days’ time, Reid Avenue will be transformed for one afternoon only into a foot traffic only celebration of blues music and local businesses.

An annual event drawing hundreds of visitors to the town, Blues on Reid will be set up by the Gulf County Chamber of Commerce in downtown Port St. Joe on March 25.

“Blues on Reid really is highlighting the businesses of Reid Avenue, and we celebrate that by shutting off the street from Second to Fourth Street and making those parts of downtown completely walkable, and we throw a stage up at Third Street,” said Joe Whitmer, the director of the Chamber of Commerce.

This year’s line-up features some of the most lucrative artists in the festival’s history, according to Whitmer.

The headliner, Mark Hummel, a Grammy nominee and Blues Award winner, will be swinging through town in the middle of his 2023 tour. Hummel is especially famed for his harmonica playing, which he has been doing since the 1970s.

“He’s played with all the greats,” Whitmer said. “… We’re really lucky to have him coming through with his band.”

The line-up also includes Blues Meets Girl, a favorite among locals and a frequent performer on the Forgotten Coast; Cory Hall, a Florida-based folk, blues and roots artist;  Memphis Lightning, a high energy blues, roots and rock-and-roll band;  and the Avey Grouws Band, a Billboard-charting act making it’s way through Port St. Joe on their current tour.

Local businesses and vendors will also be set up for visitors to enjoy.

2023 Blues on Reid lineup


Noon to 1:10 p.m. EDT – Blues Meets Girl

1:30 to 2:40 p.m. EDT – Corey Hall

3 to 4:10 p.m. EDT – Memphis Lightning

4:30 to 5:40 p.m. EDT- Avey Grouws Band

6 to 7:30 p.m. EDT – Mark Hummel