Here's the truth; every time I get a chance to talk to Dierks Bentley I leave crushin' on him  more than ever before. He is super talented, extremely good looking, completely down to earth and devoted to family, plus he knows how to have some F-U-N!

Another cool thing about Dierks Bentley is that he remembers everything. Before the camera starting rolling the three of us were laughing about the time Dierks hitchhiked into Country Thunder so he wouldn't be late for his meet & greet, then the camera man pressed "record" and it went like this...



If those words straight from Dierks' mouth aren't enough to convince you that Country Thunder is THE party of the summer, better get your tickets for 2016 now and experience it for yourself. Before you click to buy your tickets though, I have one last confession to make.

I think I accidentally made Dierks Bentley tear up a little at Country Thunder, and it made me happy. After filming stopped, and before we walked away, I told Dierks the story about the first time we heard his latest single "Riser" and why it was so amazing to us.

You may remember hearing about Kate Foster this past March during our annual St. Jude Kids Radiothon. Kate is an amazingly inspirational young woman from Rockford, who is also a former St. Jude patient. Kate is an avid gymnast, and her battle with cancer led to a leg amputation, but she didn't let it stop her. Kate got a prosthetic, and continues to compete in gymnastics competitions to this day. Since Kate is the perfect example of a riser, St. Jude set her story to music using Dierks Bentley's "Riser."

The first time Kate heard her "song" was live at our radiothon, and it was incredibly moving...

Rob Carroll, Townsquare Media

When Dierks learned of Kate's story he said with tears in his eyes, "Thank you so much for telling me about Kate; I never get to hear enough stories like these. I sure hoped she enjoyed the song." I think she did Dierks, and so do we.