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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — It’s squaring up to be a fun time for country music fans in Johnson County. 

After the popular Kanza Hall closed during the pandemic, a well-known country music venue and dance hall is now taking its place. 

Guitars & Cadillacs had its grand opening Thursday, and 1,200 people showed up to boot, scoot and boogie.

“I think country music today is bigger than in 1988,” Mitch Kerns said. “It’s much, much bigger.”

In 1988, Kerns and two of his buddies founded Guitars & Cadillacs in Kansas City’s Westport neighborhood. Over the years, they’ve opened 10 locations. The newest stage is set at 7312 W. 119th St., Overland Park.

There’s a giant dance floor complete with a bedazzled disco saddle and a Cadillac couch when you walk through the door. Kerns said people will feel the wow factor.

“People like Garth Brooks played at Guitars when they were starting out. Brooks and Dunn, Big and Rich, lots of people that are big stars today started their career with us,” Kerns said.

Ty Herndon can add his name to that list. He takes the stage Friday as the first national artist at the south Overland Park location.

Herndon lived in Kansas City for five years before moving to Nashville. His music is full of healing, integrity and maybe a breakup or two.

“In country music, we get down to the nitty-gritty of what you may be standing in your kitchen and feeling,” Herndon said.

He’s excited to play in the new 10,000-square-foot space. Friday’s show starts at 8:30 p.m.

Kerns said there’s plenty of room to dance with a connecting dueling piano bar, called Tequila Flats, just steps away, too.

“And it’s Tequila Flats at Guitars & Cadillacs. So, it’s part of it,” Kerns said. “You come in, you pay a cover charge at the door, and you’re either in Guitars and Cadillacs, Tequila Flats or the patio.”

If you show up before 10 p.m., it’s $5 at the door. After that, there’s a $10 cover. When amazing national artists, like Herndon, play at Guitars & Cadillacs is costs $15 to get in. 

They’re open Wednesday-Sunday with live music Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

On Sundays, Guitars & Cadillacs will host family nights, complete with free dance lessons for the kids and cocktails available for the parents to purchase. 

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