By C`ebrina D. Tollefsen
This Memorial Day weekend will mark not only the start of summer, but also the beginning of “Live at 5”.
Starting this weekend, a different musician will be playing in downtown Talkeetna, at the Village Park, every Friday from 5-7 p.m. It’s a free event for the whole family.
The idea for “Live at 5” began close to three years ago. Eric Denkewalter had taken a trip to Clarksville, Tennessee. There he discovered a local event, “Blues in the Park”, where a different musician played every week. It was a free community event. Denkewalter proposed the idea to the Talkeetna Chamber of Commerce, who then raised the required funds. The Chamber had been pursuing the development of different family-friendly concepts.
Denali Arts Council, DAC, was then asked to aid in the “Live at 5” presentation. DAC’s Nick Condon is now the director of the project and Monica Lettner produces it. The Talkeetna Chamber of Commerce raises the money through sponsors to pay the DAC. The DAC then pays the musicians. Sound equipment, like speakers, are also provided by the DAC.
In 2010, “Live at 5” had its first opening performance, followed by a 10 week season. It is sustained by a variety of Alaskan sponsors and now runs for 15 weeks. Flyers announcing both the current and coming musicians for the concerts will be distributed. The playing musicians will also be announced on KTNA, through Anchorage Daily News, and the Make a Scene publication.
“Live at 5” hopes to address a three-phase mission: Primarily, to serve the community by offering a safe, fun, and wholesome event. Also, it strives to provide an opportunity for locals and neighbors to spend time with one another through the busy summer. Finally, it is hoped that the music event will encourage the support of local community businesses.
This Friday, Nellie Clay will be the first to perform in the concert series. Weather conditions may vary, but the concert goes on, rain or shine. So, some days it might be a good idea to bring an umbrella…or just splash in tune to the music!