Traffic plans released for En Fuego on Saturday

Published 4:05 pm Thursday, August 22, 2013

Traffic plans are different for this year’s En Fuego event on Saturday, Aug. 24.

County Road 23 to the intersection of U.S. Highway 31 will be closed for about 30 minutes after the event Saturday night as vehicles leaving the site use both lanes of County Road 23.

Beginning at about 9:30 p.m., all traffic exiting the En Fuego site—located at 2701 County Road 23 in Verbena—will have about half an hour after the event to travel down County Road 23 to Highway 31 before law enforcement re-opens the road to the public.

“Anyone living or traveling in those areas should expect delays,” said Investigator Erric Price with the Chilton County Sheriff’s Department. “There’s no way to have a perfect solution to having 20,000 people come to Verbena, but we think this will be the most efficient way to [handle traffic].”

Price said this is the first time a road has been closed to allow event-goers to exit the venue.

Price said parents planning to pick up their children after the event should wait until about 10:30 p.m. when the road is open again.

“They’re not going to be able to get into the site until about 10:30,” Price said. “That would be the best way for them to do it.”

Detour routes for those wanting to avoid the road closure would be: traveling north, to get on Interstate 65 via the first Prattville exit and get off at Exit 200 in Verbena; and traveling south, to get on Exit 200 in Verbena and get off at the first Prattville exit.

Price said the Clanton Police Department and Chilton County Sheriff’s Department are partnering to have more than 30 law enforcement officers directing traffic and parking, as well as providing onsite security before, during and after the event.

“En Fuego has never been a safety issue,” Price said. “We’ve never had any big problems with crime. Having security for all parking and the site is simply precautionary.”

To ensure parking goes smoothly, Price said he urges people to limit the number of vehicles they bring by carpooling with each other.

“We really want people to ride with each other and families to carpool,” Price said. “That would really help us with parking. We also encourage people to make sure they don’t lock their keys in their car.”

Price said people could start arriving as early as 10 a.m. to beat long lines and get a good parking space.

The event will start at 2 p.m.

“We highly encourage everyone to come two hours before the event,” Price said. “This year, we have six different fields for people to park in. The earlier they come, the better parking they’ll get.”

The 17th En Fuego outdoor Christian music festival will feature headliner Jeremy Camp, along with Hawk Nelson, Fireflight, Citizen Way, Tedashii, Haley Morgan Smith and Matt Littlejohn Band from Lomax.

Those who submit online donations to En Fuego of more than $25 will be entered in a drawing for a meet-and-greet with Camp.

The winner of the drawing will be announced Saturday afternoon.

En Fuego co-founder Johnny Giles said more counselors are still needed.

Anyone interested in serving as a counselor during the event may sign up at or at the counselors’ tent at 3:45 p.m. Saturday.

“We’re just really excited about how our community is coming together this year to show support for this event, to pull people together across denominational barriers for one common purpose,” Giles said. “We’re excited about our weather forecast—just a slight chance of rain. The weather is looking great.”

To get to En Fuego from Birmingham, take Interstate 65 South to Exit 205, go south on U.S. Highway 31 about 7.7 miles, turn left onto County Road 23, go three miles and the site will be on the left.

To get to the site from Montgomery, take I-65 North to Exit 186, go north on Highway 31 about eight miles, turn right onto County Road 68, go 2.8 miles to the Highway 143 intersection, go straight and continue on County Road 68 another 4.8 miles (turns into County Road 193/Tram Road about halfway). At the stop sign at Lightwood Road (County Road 23), turn left to go to the site (about 2.5–3 miles).

For additional information, call (205) 516-0467 or visit