Tonight’s performance by three local bands will kick off Chapel Hill’s Locally Grown Music and Movie Series.
The summer series features local up-and-coming band performances and movies shown atop Wallace Parking Deck at 150 E. Rosemary St.
Matthew Carusona, Chapel Hill festivals and community celebrations assistant supervisor, said the series is designed to promote downtown Chapel Hill.
“In the summer, a lot of the students are away, and this makes something for students who stuck around, and also residents to go out and eat downtown, shop downtown and come enjoy free entertainment,” Carusona said.
Tonight’s event will feature the Lizzy Ross Band, Mary Johnson Rockers and The Spark ,and Birds and Arrows.
Glenn Boothe, owner of the Chapel Hill music venue Local 506, is a board member of the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership and is responsible for selecting bands for the series.
Boothe said he tries to select local bands that have been successful at Local 506 or other local venues, such as Cat’s Cradle.
“The idea is that if a band is packing Local 506 with a cover charge, then ideally two, three or four times as many people would be willing to come see them for free,” Boothe said.
Boothe said that the environment of the event allows band’s fans of all ages to attend the show.
“For a lot of bands that are at the level of playing Cat’s Cradle, unfortunately, since it’s a rock club, people with kids or kids themselves don’t get to see these bands,” Boothe said. “By playing this outdoor concert, it’s an opportunity for all fans to come see bands perform.”
Mary Johnson Rockers, singer-songwriter of the band Mary Johnson Rockers and The Spark, said she is excited about performing outside at a free-admission event.
“Music and art should be accessible to anyone, and this is an opportunity for anyone to come out and have and a good time and come support music and not worry about a price tag or a dress code,” Rockers said.
Carusona said the film-screening events include dinner and a movie, a promotion that offers discounts to Locally Grown attendees who mention the promotion or bring a coupon at participating restaurants.
“The idea is that folks will go downtown, eat dinner and create this local economic impact,” Carusona said.
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