Whitehall city leaders hope those who attend this year's Whitehall Food Truck & Fun Festival will love it like crazy.

Officials are preparing for the seventh annual fest -- and are thrilled to have landed country-music artist Lee Brice.

"We are excited to propel and make better every year this great community event," said Kaitlin King, community-affairs manager for Whitehall.

The free festival is set from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. July 27 on South Yearling Road between Etna Road and Langley Avenue.

Brice is known for such hits as "Love Like Crazy," "Parking Lot Party" and "I Drive Your Truck."

He's also written songs for such artists as Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, Jason Aldean, Blake Shelton, Faith Hill and Kenny Chesney.

Brice has been nominated for two Grammy Awards and a Country Music Association Award, among others.

"Booking a (CMA-nominated) performer speaks volumes of how committed we are to bringing a wonderful and free family-fun festival to Whitehall," King said.

The event also will bring more than 30 central Ohio food trucks to the city.

The festival will feature two stages of entertainment as well as artists, crafters and a play area for children, King said.

The children's area will close at 6 p.m. -- earlier than in past years -- to allow additional standing room for the crowd anticipated for Brice's appearance, King said.

Brice is scheduled to perform on the City Stage from 8:30 to 10 p.m. July 27.

Other performers on the City Stage, beginning at noon and in order of appearance, are Yours for the Taking, Alexis Gomez, the Whitehall-Yearling High School marching band, Three Ton Load and North to Nashville.

Performers at the Community Stage, beginning at 11 a.m. and in order of appearance, are Lost Black Lab, Olde Cellar Band, Hurricane Jerry & the Surge, the WYHS marching band, Ashley Martin Band, Whiskey Saints, Radio Tramps and the Fabulous Johnson Brothers.

Whitehall will provide shuttles to the event between 1 and 10 p.m. July 27; they'll leave from Beechwood and Kae Avenue elementary schools, where parking is available, King said.

South Yearling Road between Etna Road and Langley Avenue will close around 9 p.m. July 26 to set up for the event; it will reopen around 2 a.m. July 28.

City officials expect a larger crowd this year -- perhaps the largest to date for an event that is estimated to have attracted 10,000 to 15,000 people in the recent past.

"I'm very excited about this year's Food Truck & Fun Fest," Whitehall Mayor Kim Maggard said.

"We always work to make it better than the year before," she said.

"The variety of excellent food and music keep people coming back."

kcorvo@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekCorvo