Music will soon fill Carson City’s summer nights.
The Brewery Arts Center is launching a 10-week concert series starting June 4 with Mumbo Gumbo, a seven-piece band which describes its music as a mix of soul, zydeco, folk, blues, rock, cajun, Caribbean, and country.
The concerts are free and being held outdoors at the BAC every Saturday (except for Friday, June 25) through Aug. 4.
There will be food trucks, a painting wall for attendees to get creative, activities for kids and special events such as pet adoption.
“We’re hoping people come early and have some dinner. There’s not going to be any weeks where there isn’t something else going on,” said Gina Lopez Hill, BAC executive director. “We’re trying to create a festival atmosphere.”
The BAC also is working with other organizations and events, including Muscle Power and Jazz and Beyond.
The final BAC concert featuring Brazilian band SambaDá, for example, will help kick off the jazz series that will play throughout August.
The concerts are made possible by the Los Angeles-based Levitt Foundation and its Levitt AMP Music Series, which provides $25,000 grants to 15 mid-sized cities with the mission of “strengthening the social fabric of America through the power of free, live music.”
The BAC was one of 40 applicants chosen to take part in online voting. After voting, that group was winnowed down to the top 25 (Carson City came in 17th) and from there grants were awarded to 15 cities, including Charlottesville, Va., Midvale, Utah, and Sheboygan, Wisc.
“We’re the farthest West,” said Hill. “I didn’t think we had a shot, honestly.”
BAC had launched a campaign online and among its members to get people to vote and when the cities were chosen, the foundation sent out notifications to every email address that voted.
“That’s how we found out. They knew before we did,” Hill said. “We started getting emails congratulating us.”
BAC also got inundated with messages from music bands from all over, who watched to see which applicants won out.
Two of the series’ bands, Dangermuffin and Southern Drawl Band, come from South Carolina and Tennessee, respectively.
Hill said the goal was to get an eclectic mix of musical genres.
The BAC is building a stage next to its building, facing blocked off Minnesota Street, where there’s going to be chairs.
A small lawn, which was required by the Levitt grant, has been put in for additional seating.
The Artisan Store will remain open as will the Performance Hall where bathrooms will be available.
BAC also is receiving $5,500 from the city’s Arts and Culture Commission and is looking for sponsors.
So far, Traditional American Music Project in Reno is sponsoring the July 2 concert featuring Southwestern Pilgrimage and its opening act, Sierra Sweethearts.