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History of the


The Heritage Music Blues Festival began in 2001 when Bruce Wheeler envisioned a Blues music festival in a newly constructed waterfront park on the bank of the Ohio River in downtown Wheeling. The fact that Wheeling had no blues scene or even a blues club, band or solo artist did not deter Wheeler from developing a festival. Promoted as "A Weekend of Award-Winning Blues", the Festival gets raves from coast to coast. Wheeler's festival features two stages, a Main Stage with Blues Music Award Winners and up-and-coming IBC solo/duo and band winning acts, and a Second Stage dedicated to local and regional artists, from WV, OH, PA, and MD.

During the event you can find his wife, Phyllis Sigal, daughter Amanda and her husband Chris holding down the MainGate while his son Leland, who was 12 when the event began, serves as the MainStage Manager. That Blues Family atmosphere spills over to the audience who has traveled to Wheeling, WV from 25 states and 4 countries for the last 17 years for the annual August event.

Following the 2021 BluesFest, Heritage Music has partnered with Roxby Development to develop more entertainment offerings in Wheeling at the Heritage Port, The Scottish Rite, The McLure House Hotel and other venues to increase entertainment tourism in and around Wheeling, WV.

The first such event will be the Heritage Music Winter Blues Weekend at the Mclure House to be held February 11, 12 , 13 2022. See you there!

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