The Summer Nights program, put on by local not-for-profits to help raise funds for their respective societies, still has five weeks of entertainment to bring your way on Saturday evenings.
This past weekend, after the open mic segment from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., the entertainment shifted a little, moving away from bands or live music, and instead brought attendees the magic of Darren Polkinghorn.
This coming weekend, August 4, members of the Cowichan Tribes will be attending and will be sharing with audiences some traditional First Nations drumming.
“The following act we are still putting together,” says Elvin Hedden, one of the organizers. “We had someone booked but unfortunately they are not able to make it.”
Hedden says that if bands, performers, solo musicians, or anyone else is wanting to fill this slot, they are welcome to give him a call.
“If they phone and someone has been booked, there are little spots on the following weekends where we can fit them in.”
Hedden would also like to remind people that the open mic portion of the evening, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., is open to any kind of performer.
“Last week we had Richard Elliott who read some of his recent poetry,” said Hedden. “It isn’t just music, it’s any kind of entertainer, as long as their act is family oriented.
He adds that if someone wanted to get up and tell jokes or do a comedy act, that would be great, it just has to be family friendly.
The remaining weekends in August seem to have something for everyone.
On August 11 the booked entertainment starts off with a poet and ends with Jack Gunderson and the Joint Chiefs. This local band plays 1960s and 70s rock cover tunes.
On August 18 it’s the Medford Singers, a 30-voice choir headed by Mike Simkins. The choir has performed everything from classic Broadway tunes to blues to Christmas concerts.
Following the Medford Singers will be Jan Matthews One Gal Band. Matthews will sing for the audience for the remainder of the evening.
On August 25, Mike Simkins returns, but this time with the Community Big Band. This group will be playing big band tunes from the 1940s all the way through to the 1970s. Afterwards, crowds will be able to take in some First Nations music with Cheryl Bear and Randy Barneston.
Finally, on September 1, Summer Nights will be presenting its encore performers. These will be performers selected from the entire summer and will include Parker Smith, Ray Smith, Jack Gunderson, and a number of other bands. Each will play for a quarter of an hour.
All evenings are free to attend, however organizers would like to remind everyone that donations will be accepted for the non-profit group of the evening.
Non-profit groups that are involved include the Lake Cowichan Food Bank, Kaatza Lakeside Players, Cowichan Family Arts Council, Cowichan Lake District Chamber of Commerce, CIVC Radio, Honeymoon Bay Lodge and Retreat, and the Cowichan Lake District Seniors Association. As well, bring along a non-perishable food item to donate to the Cowichan Lake Food Bank.
For more information, contact Hedden at 250-749-6379.