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Blake Shelton performs a free beach concert in Atlantic City, NJ

Thursday, July 31, 2014 was not your typical weekday in Atlantic City or on the Atlantic City beach, it was very, very special day.

Blake Shelton performs a free beach concert in Atlantic City, NJ
Donald B. Kravitz
Blake Shelton performs a free beach concert in Atlantic City, NJ
Donald B. Kravitz

Make no mistake, Atlantic City is accustomed to large crowd events like Miss America, The Air Show, Bader Field concerts and from time to time beach events.

However, this Thursday was different. This Thursday Blake Shelton performed a free concert in front of an estimated 60,000 beach goers. His fans came out in droves to see one of the most popular artists in country music and from the very beginning of the show they weren't disappointed.

The day at the beach started at 10am and continued all day. It really began to gather steam when country duo Dan + Shay took the stage, in the late afternoon, to open up for Shelton.

Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney may not be as much of a household name as Blake Shelton but they are making their way to superstar status ever since their hit tune “19 You + Me” reached #11 on the US Country Airplay charts.

Making the beautiful day on the beach even better, was the way the audience absolutely loved Dan + Shay. The legion of country fans partied and were dancing around enjoying every second of the opening act.

At this point the crowd was responsive and respectful. There were no obvious signs that any of the crowd were doing anything but having a wonderful experience, thanks in part to sponsors of the event and to the audience as well.

The party calmed down for a short break while the stage was set for the headliner. Then Blake Shelton took the beach stage and things exploded to a whole other level.

As he took the stage and looked out at the sea of humanity Shelton exclaimed, "I didn't come here to play volleyball, go swimming, or build sand castles, I came here to drink beer and play country music."

Shelton wasted no time getting the audience involved with the tune, “All About Tonight,” as the thousands of people on the beach were dancing and singing already. He followed that with, “The More I Drink,” one of his older singles and then with, “She Wouldn't Be Gone,” one of his #1 hits.

It appeared like the beach was a sea of movement as his fans continued to dance and sing with arms in the air when Shelton performed his smash hit “Doin’ What She Likes,” just one of his many #1 hits. He also continued to talk about how much he loved how many country fans were on the beach to see him perform.

Shelton did not forget where he was and sang, “Some Beach,” which was perfect for this venue, the beach in Atlantic City. The loyal crowd went wild.

Shelton never lost his audience from the beginning to the end which only proves his star power. He had the crowd in love with him as he performed hit after hit of his country repertoire.

One of the most interesting moments of a country music beach concert is instead of jeans and cowboy boots, is seeing country fans in bathing suits and cowboy hats . . . and yes, there were some die hard beach goers in cowboy boots.

On this Thursday, Atlantic City shined, the city was a showcase and the people and agencies involved with bringing this concert home, did an outstanding job. They made the visitors feel welcome and at home. All those visitors and concert goers also performed admirably. They came, they had a great time, they proved that when the right ingredients are put together, it can be a very memorable experience. Way to go Atlantic City!!!!!!!

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