Friday Night Live series heats up summer

One way to kick off summer is to join Southern Indiana Center for the Arts for its annual Friday Night Live event, which features local bands each Friday evening for six weeks.

Bad Medicine started the 2016 series, which will run until July 15, this past Friday night.

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Darnell Dukes, executive director of the arts center, said the band has a following, which helped bring more people to the event.

The weather, however, was slightly unpredictable, as it was lightly raining at the beginning of the show.

“The threat of rain right before might have kept some people from attending,” Dukes said.

But many of those who attended were satisfied they had a place to spend some time with the whole family.

“Several people commented to us how good the band was and how nice it was to have a place to bring the entire family to,” Dukes said.

She said the concerts help people relax in a nice setting.

“We have a lovely setting at SICA and try to get bands that appeal to all ages,” she said. “Fridays are the end of the workweek, so you can look at this as time to wind down or the great beginning of the weekend.”

Dukes said the organization uses the event to help promote other events it offers and help raise funds to support programming. SICA is a nonprofit and does not receive any tax dollars.

“The freewill donations and membership signups help us keep our doors open and the lights on,” she said.

As far as promoting the other events at the center, Dukes said Friday Night Live is a great opportunity to let the community know about what the center has coming up.

“It’s an opportunity to visit us, and we don’t get a lot of foot traffic throughout the week,” she said. “We like to host events for people of all ages.”

This year, Dukes hopes the event sees more favorable weather than the previous year.

“Last year, we had so many rainouts or concerts cut short,” she said. “One of our best concerts last year was the Open Mic Night, but a storm blew in, and we had to cut it short.”

Dukes said it was a shame because many people showed up and had several performers ready to play.

“I was surprised at how much local talent we have,” she said. “We already have people asking about how they can be a part of that night.”

This year’s Open Mic Night, hosted by Lom Win, will be from 7 to 9 p.m. July 8.

If you go

Southern Indiana Center for the Arts at 2001 N. Ewing St. in Seymour is hosting the Friday Night Live summer music series.

Shows go from 7 to 9 p.m. each Friday through July 15 on the center’s outdoor stage.

Bad Medicine opened the season this past Friday.

The remaining schedule includes:

June 10: The Ang Trio

June 17: Joe Persinger and friends

June 24: The Reunion Band

July 8: Open Mic Night hosted by Lom Win

July 15: Lom Win and Mojo Soul

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Jordan Richart is a correspondent for The (Seymour) Tribune.