Local entities offer diverse entertainment lineups
by Marie Nesmith
Jul 04, 2014 | 1154 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
With summer in full swing, several entertainment series are picking up steam in the Cartersville area. Already underway, the offerings include the Clarence Brown Conference Center’s Summer Concert Series, Red Top Mountain State Park’s Bluegrass Concert Series, the Booth Western Art Museum’s Summer Entertainment Series and the Cartersville Downtown Development Authority’s First Friday events.

Bluegrass Concert Series

From the stage of the Vaughan log cabin, the diverse sounds of bluegrass are being showcased at Red Top Mountain State Park through July 26.

Presented by the Friends of Red Top Mountain State Park, the series features four more shows: Blue Road, July 5; Old Dixie Highway, July 12; Suggins Brothers, July 19; and Cherokee Cut Ups, July 26. Drawing between 100 to 400 people, the concerts start at 8 p.m. and conclude at 9:30 p.m.

“We’ve been doing this for 10 years,” said Peggy Martin, volunteer music coordinator for Red Top. “We started in 2005. The time frame for the concerts has varied over the years. For the last couple of years, we’ve played just from early to mid-May through July — that would be every Saturday plus some bonus concerts. We’ve been known to go through to Labor Day, but that’s just a decision made by the park and the Friends of Red Top [Mountain] State Park.

“There’s a wide range of music within the term bluegrass. ... Since [the 1950s], bluegrass is ever-evolving and it can range all the way to more of a blues and jazz, but it’s still within the bluegrass genre. And I think [it is] important to note that a lot of our bands are well-versed in different kinds of music. So that comes out in their bluegrass that you hear. ... It depends on the ability of the band as well as their preference. They’re playing for an hour and a half for these concerts, so we get a wonderful, wonderful taste of what the bands can do.”

With seating available in the grounds around the park’s log cabin, patrons are encouraged to arrive early and bring a blanket or chair. In case of inclement weather, concerts will be moved indoors to a conference room inside the Park Office.

To support the series, “bucket” donations are accepted at each concert. While admission to the event — held behind the Park Office — are free, individuals need to display an annual pass or a $5 daily ParkPass in their vehicle. For more information, call 770-975-0055 or visit www.GeorgiaStateParks.org.

Booth’s Summer Entertainment Series

For the fifth year, the Booth Western Art Museum is presenting its Summer Entertainment Series.

Already underway, the offering will continue July 17 at 7 p.m. with the Tumbleweed Cowboy Band and special guest cowboy poet Tom Kerlin and Aug. 21 at 7 p.m. with country-western singer Scott Thompson. In addition to entertainment, the series features a buffet-style dinner and a cash bar in the venue’s ballroom.

“During the fall and spring, we kind of concentrate on ... more scholarly lecture-type programming where we bring in artists and writers,” said Seth Hopkins, executive director of the Booth museum. “We felt like it was kind of fun and entertaining during the summer to take a break from that a little bit and bring in some music or entertainment acts and do sort of a dinner theater series in June, July and August. And it’s been very well-received. We have had 80 to 120 folks at various times.

“We actually had a sell out for the Mark Twain event in June. That was very successful and we’re looking forward to the same turnout for the other two left on the schedule. ... [The entertainment offerings have] to have some tie back to the permanent collection and help to connect people to the art [and bring the] art alive. That’s always part of our goal whenever we do anything with music or poetry or entertainment purposes.”

Each presentation costs $25 for Booth members and $30 for non-members.

To purchase tickets to the upcoming events, visit the museum at 501 Museum Drive in Cartersville or call 770-387-1300. More information about the series can be obtained online at www.boothmuseum.org.

Clarence Brown Conference Center’s Summer Concert Series

Pleased by the first show’s turnout, Clarence Brown Conference Center Director Melissa Bell is looking forward to seeing the Summer Concert Series grow during the final two presentations.

The free-admission performances began June 21 with a concert by Little Known Letter and will continue with The Old Mill Road Band and Babe’s Bayou Band on July 19 and Aug. 9, respectively. Each event will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Bartow Amphitheatre, a more than 300-seat outdoor venue at the conference center, 5450 State Route 20 in Cartersville.

“The first one was great,” Bell said. “They were a group out of Rome and really a lot of people did not know much about them, but they did a fantastic job. ... It was a beautiful night because it threatened to storm and then it kind of blew over. So the weather was perfect. It’s very laid back. That venue is just very nice once the sun goes down. The acoustics are great.

“We had a good turnout and everybody was just raving about how pretty it was, [that] it was fun and they were coming back for the rest of the concerts. So I’m excited. I think we’re going to have even better turnout for The Old Mill Road Band because they have a good fan base and Babe’s Bayou has a great fan base as well. So I think it will get better and better.”

In addition to presenting a variety of music, the Summer Concert Series offers food and beverages for purchase, or if patrons prefer, they may bring their own picnics.

For more information, call 770-606-5763 or visit www.brownconferencecenter.com.

First Friday

Instead of continuing the established Summer Concert Series, the Cartersville Downtown Development Authority is offering musical entertainment at some of its First Friday events at Friendship Plaza.

“For the 2014 Main Street Annual Work Plan, one of the top goals established by the board was to put a lot more emphasis and focus into the First Friday events,” Cartersville DDA Manager Tara Currier said. “Each month, these events have gotten bigger and better, and during the summer months have included musical entertainment. Because so much work and effort was desired into growing these events, it was decided to not necessarily do a ‘Summer Concert Series’ as has been done in the past, but instead to sort of fold those into our First Friday events. As such, when there is a concert downtown, people can expect that it will also include other ‘First Friday Fun,’ such as activities for kids, special shopping incentives or something else that goes along with the theme for that month.

“Our first band of the year was the Alex Guthrie Band during the May First Friday. Other upcoming musical entertainment includes Celebration, A Tribute to the Allman Brothers Band during the Aug. 1 First Friday and Rolling Nowhere during the Sept. 5 First Friday. We’ve also already had the Tom & Chad Show out a couple of First Fridays and plan to have them again in October. The hope is that First Friday will continue to grow as we have already seen this year, and with support of the community and local sponsors, we’d love to offer more bands and musical entertainment all year long during these events.”

For more information, call the Cartersville DDA at 770-607-3480.