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Jeff Bridges and the Abiders to perform at CarolinaFest

CHARLOTTE, N.C. Oscar-winning actor and musician Jeff Bridges is expected to perform at the CarolinaFest on Labor Day, the Charlotte in 2012 host committee said Thursday.

Bridges and his band -- the Abiders -- are the first musical artists to be announced for the main stage of the free street festival. The stage will be at the corner of Trade and Tryon streets. No performance time has been announced yet.

Bridges won an Academy Award for his performance in “Crazy Heart,” in which he played a country singer-songwriter. He also played Rooster Cogburn in the remake of “True Grit.” And in “The Big Lebowski,” he played a laid-back stoner known as The Dude. His band’s name comes from a popular line in that Coen Brothers’ film: “The Dude abides.”

Singer-songwriter John Legend has also been mentioned as a possible CarolinaFest performer, though the host committee has not confirmed that name or any others besides Bridges and the Abiders.

CarolinaFest is expected to feature a variety of family-friendly events. It’ll begin at 10 a.m. with the city’s annual Labor Day parade and activities will be spread along Tryon Street. Other features include the Legacy Village in the parking lot of the Gantt Center and The Green.

Stage programs will run from noon to about 6:15 p.m. Learn more at www.carolinafest2012.com.

While he’s in town, Bridges is also expected to attend the non-partisan Impact Film Festival. He narrated “Hunger Hits Home,” a film about childhood hunger that’s part of the festival.

The festival will be held at Mez & EpiCentre Theatres in Charlotte and at the Channelside Cinemas in Tampa -- site of the Republican National Convention.

Bridges is also expected to be at the screening in Tampa, too.

“I don’t dig party lines, so I’m heading to both (conventions) to get people talking about an issue in our country that knows no party -- childhood hunger,” Bridges wrote in a blog post published on the Web site of Share Our Strength, which has a No Kid Hungry campaign.

Staff Writer Tim Funk contributed.

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