Concourse/South music, arts festival expanding

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By Morgan Bryce
Staff Reporter

The second annual Concourse/South, a weeklong arts and music festival, will be held Aug. 20-27 in downtown Opelika.
After the success of last year’s single day, music-focused event, Concourse/South organizer and Cottonseed Studios owner Richard Patton said he wanted to tap into the area’s vibrant art scene and make the festival an occasion for all.
“There used to be an arts festival here in Opelika, which was done for many, many years and was very successful. That was a day (long) festival, and it was a big deal … it focused specifically on artists and artisans, and we wanted to bring a part of that into this,” Patton said.
The festival kicks off with a dinner at O Grows Community Garden and performance from the Opelika-based indie/folk duo Martha’s Trouble. Each night of Concourse/South, there will either be live music or family-friendly art activities throughout downtown.
On Aug. 26, the Concourse/South Artist and Maker’s Market will be held on North Railroad Avenue, featuring locally made products and goods.
Proceeds from the festival will be donated to O Grows, Big House Foundation and future arts programming for Opelika. Patton encourages those with a passion for the arts to come and not only support a worthy cause, but enjoy downtown Opelika and all it has to offer.
“I think a big part of what this is is the importance of the community being patrons of the arts … we’re all patrons, and that means you gotta come listen, you gotta come buy, come buy tickets, go to the stores and watch these artists. We all want to be a patron of the arts to make our city a cooler, better place, but you gotta have people come out,” Patton said.
General admission for the week costs $25, which grants patrons all-access status except to the kickoff event at O Grows. For full ticketing options, music lineup, sponsorship information and more, visit www.concourse.live.
Below is a full schedule for Concourse/South, subject to change until the week of the event:
Aug. 20 – The kickoff for Concourse South, Supper and Songs, will be held at 6:30 p.m. at O Grows Community Garden located behind the Southside Center for the Arts, located at 1103 Glenn St. Tickets are separate for this event and cost $60.
Aug. 21 – Beginning at 6 p.m. along North Railroad Avenue, local artists will do live murals. There will be live music and community fabric dyeing.
Aug. 22- Renowned folk artist Charlie Lucas will hold a children’s workshop on sculpture making at 712 N. Railroad Ave, starting at 6 p.m.
– There will be an art installation on the walls of Red Clay Brewery, located at 704 N. Railroad Ave., from 6 p.m. – close.
– Opelika Songwriter’s Night will take place at John Emerald Distilling Company, located at 706 N. Railroad Ave, starting at 8 p.m.
Aug. 23 – Vinyl records from 10,000 Hz will be on sale at Sidetrack, located at 817 S. Railroad Ave., starting at 11 a.m.
– A barista throwdown and latte art competition will be held at Sidetrack from 6:30 – 8 p.m.
– A special performance from a ‘secret’ guest will start at 8:30 p.m. at Sidetrack
Aug. 24 – An art exhibition will be held at the Southside Center for the Arts from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. which will feature the works of photographer Kyes Stevens.
– Sidetrack will also host an art exhibition, starting at 8 p.m. Work will be on display from local artists like Iain Stewart and R.C. Hagans.
Aug. 25 – The Brook and The Bluff record release party will be held at 712 N. Railroad Ave., with music from the J.B. Roberts Trio starting at 7:30 p.m.
Aug. 26 – Artists and Maker’s Market from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. at 712 N. Railroad Ave. Free to the public.
– Food vendors will be on hand from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Concourse/South wristbands are required to enter this area of the festival.
– Full day of music hosted by Cottonseed Studios, starting at 11 a.m. Saturday and lasting until 2 a.m. Sunday. Concourse/South wristbands are required to enter this area of the festival.
– Alternative bands WRAY, Dirty Lungs and Lady Legs, which represent indie label Communicating Vessels, will perform inside John Emerald Distillery, beginning at 11:15 p.m.

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