Summer Concert Series set to kick off Friday

The planned concerts will all take place on alternating Fridays starting in July, with the exception of the final one in September. (File Photo) 

After a 2020 event season cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic, Frankfort’s Summer Concert Series will return this year.

The dates for the concert series were announced by concert series chair and Downtown Frankfort Inc. (DFI) Secretary Jack Kennedy at the DFI monthly board meeting on Tuesday.

Per Kennedy, the series will start somewhat later than in normal years in hopes that the virus’ spread continues to slow even more before the event starts.

The planned concerts will all take place on Fridays, with the exception of the final one in September. That one will take place Thursday, Sept. 9.

The dates are as follows:

  • July 2, 16, 30

  • Aug. 13, 27

  • Sept. 9 

Kennedy, and other members of the DFI board, said that the events are important for the health of the downtown business community.

Usually held on the grounds of the Old Capitol, Kennedy said that he is in talks with the state and the city to try and get the appropriate permissions to host the event there again.

The alternate location, if some problem were to occur with DFI securing its usual space, would be the now-vacant Parcel B, which sits just to the North of the Old Capitol grounds. However, Kennedy said he would prefer to hold the event at its normal location.

“I think these concerts are vital for the downtown businesses,” Kennedy said. “We want to do everything we can to make sure that they benefit as much as possible from the summer concert series … I’m going to do everything to try and make sure the concerts are downtown on Broadway like they should be.”

Board member Karl Lawrence, who co-owns the new Irish pub Mortimer Bibb’s Public House on St. Clair Street, said that he would strongly prefer the event be held at the Old Capitol.

“The downtown businesses have to be a priority,” Lawrence said. “… Moving it to Parcel B takes the focus off of downtown. Moving it is going to be detrimental to the downtown businesses because if you’re asking them to participate over there, they’ll either have to get more staff to keep their location open and open a tent or close down their brick and mortar temporarily.”

Kennedy said that the acts for the six shows will likely be finalized at DFI’s next meeting in April.

The series was canceled last year due to the pandemic. Other marquee downtown events Bourbon on the Banks and Bourbonanza were either significantly modified or canceled.

Bourbon on the Banks will also take place this year somewhat later than it has in years past according to event chair Diane Strong. Strong said the event will take place in October, and the committee has already secured the involvement of around 20 distilleries with more to come.

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