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Farm Aid to Mark 30th Anniversary in Chicago

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    Willie Nelson performs at Farm Aid on September 30, 2006 at The Tweeter Center in Camden, New Jersey. (Photo by Jeff Fusco/Getty Images)

    Farm Aid will mark its 30th anniversary with a star-studded performance in Chicago.

    Featuring stalwarts Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Dave Matthews, the annual music and food festival will be held on Sept. 19 at the FirstMerit Bank Pavilion on Northerly Island, festival organizers announced Tuesday.

    Farm Aid 30 will continue with the concert's movement to benefit and support family farms.

    “We organized the first Farm Aid concert in Illinois in 1985 to respond to the people suffering during the Farm Crisis,” Farm Aid President and Founder Willie Nelson said in a statement. “Thirty years later, in Chicago, we’ll bring together so many of the people — farmers, eaters, advocates and activists — who have made the progress of the Good Food Movement possible. At Farm Aid 30, we’ll celebrate the impact we’ve had and rally our supporters for the work ahead.”

    Nelson, Mellencamp, Young and Matthews have headlined every Farm Aid going back to 2001, but the quartet is always joined by special guests

    Also performing at the September event are Imagine Dragons, Jack Johnson, Kacey Musgraves, Mavis Staples and Old Crow Medicine Show.

    Farm Aid started in 1985, spurred by a comment Bob Dylan made at Live Aid earlier in the year.

    "I hope that some of the money...maybe they can just take a little bit of it, maybe...one or two million, maybe...and use it, say, to pay the mortgages on some of the farms and, the farmers here, owe to the banks," Dylan said.

    Since its inception, Farm Aid has raised more than $48 million to help stabilize family farms, according to its official website.

    Tickets for this year’s fest go on sale at at 10 a.m. Aug. 3 at Livenation.com with ticket prices ranging from $49.50 to $189.50. The event will also be streamed live on Sept. 19 at farmaid.org  

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