Riverbend kicks off this Friday for an eight-day festival. This year, you can expect to see some changes.

Executive Director, Chris Baker, says he and his team took previous concerns into consideration planning for this year’s Riverbend.

These changes should make it more convenient and enjoyable for participants.

The Riverbend festival is in the top 10% of American festivals.

READ MORE |  Riverbend 2018     

Baker says Riverbend is much like a family reunion. It produces about a 29.6 million dollar impact on the economy in Chattanooga.

“It's a good economic driver for the town but the more important part is bringing people together,” said Chip Baker.

Baker says he and his team sat down to discuss what can be improved for the next year.

This year participants can expect to have more comfort as they watch performances.

“More open seating more restricted seating you have to buy a seat but the rest are open seating,” said Baker.

Baker says people can cool down at a cooling station, but you also have the chance to party like Michael Phelps.

A pool will be placed in front of the coca cola stage.

“I know this will happen one of the artists will be singing and look down and going people down there in a pool,” said Baker.

Baker says the VIP tickets offer exclusive food and drink options but this year those tickets allow you to use private restrooms.

“You get your own bathrooms,” said Baker. “Bathrooms believe it or not are considered a major upgrade.”

Baker anticipates thousands will show up for this event.

Some past participants say they had an issue finding parking.

“We have the Uber and Lyft drop off points in front of the aquarium. We have a series of buses that will be making a route,” said Baker.

Hank Williams Jr., Switchfoot, and Flo Rida are a few headliners for the event.