Steve Johnson and Charity Nuse, of Big Leg Emma, helped kick off a brand new concert series at Long Point State Park last Thursday evening.
The series, called "Acoustics On The Lake," is hosted by Ready About Sailing Inc.'s Lindsey Truver, and her father Doug. It is held at the marina at Long Point State Park, and it will continue each Thursday, from 6-9 p.m., with the exception of today. The event also features an outdoor barbecue, icecream and other food and beverage options located within the cafe.
According to Truver, the goal behind the series is to create a family-friendly environment that features music which is accented by the natural acoustics of the lake.
"We're in this little sound barrier, and it's a great atmosphere," said Truver. "I figured if we offered good music, food and beverage, the people will come."
Johnson and Nuse said they consider themselves pioneers of kicking off music series' around Chautauqua County, and that hosting performances at Long Point State Park is a great move. Nuse is working with Truver on booking the acts for each week.
"I think this is a fantastic idea," said Nuse. "Lindsey has been one of our best friends from high school, so when she started talking to me about it, I said, 'Yeah, I'd love to help you do that.' There's really a lot going on Thursday nights around the lake, and the fact that it's right on the lake makes it so boats can come, and they can hang out on the lake to listen."
"We travel so much that when we get a chance to do something for Chautauqua County or around the lake - we jump at it," said Johnson.
According to Nuse, playing as an acoustic duo has given them a newfound freedom to experiment and develop their skill with their instruments and voices.
"It's given Steve a lot more space to work on leads on his acoustic guitar - which has been exciting," said Nuse. "We also try to bring stuff that we haven't done in a while or ever."
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"Yeah, like obscure cover songs or brand new songs that we just wrote," added Johnson. "It gives us a chance to get them out there and test the waters with them. It also builds chemistry and is a different feel, but we still try to bring that Big Leg Emma dance vibe. It gives us a different outlet to express ourselves."
Johnson and Nuse will make a second appearance at Acoustics On The Lake on Aug. 22. The series will also feature: Gina Vecchio and Barry Edwards on July 18; SYMBA, which consists of Infinity Performing Arts students Hayley Restivo and Ryan Hawkins on Aug. 29; and Kev Rowe in August.
For more information call 386-5838 or search for "Ready About Sailing, Inc." on Facebook.
As per usual, here are the highlights and happenings going on in the area.
Sail Rock 2013 To Be Featured At Chautauqua Institution Friday: The music of the 1970s and 80s comes alive with nothing but hit songs sung by the original artists Friday as multiple artists take the stage at the Chautauqua Institution Amphitheater. The evening includes memorable and iconic songs performed by Christopher Cross such as: "Sailing," "Arthur's Theme (Best That You Can Do)," "Ride the Wind" and "Think of Laura." Songs by Orleans include: "Still The One," "Dance With Me." and "Love Is Alive." Songs by Firefall include:"You Are The Woman," "Just Remember I Love You" and "Strange Way." Songs by John Ford Coley include: "I'd Really Love To See You Tonight," "Nights Are Forever Without You," "We''ll Never Have To Say Goodbye Again" and "Love Is The Answer." Robbie Dupree's "Steal Away," Player's "Baby Come Back" and "This Time I'm In It For Love." For more information visit www.paradiseartist.com.
The performance is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. at the Chautauqua Institution Amphitheater. Tickets start at $40. For more information call 357-6250 or visit www.chqtickets.com.
The Great Blue Heron Music Festival To Begin Friday: The 22nd annual Great Blue Heron Festival, a celebration that brings together music and the outdoors, is scheduled for Friday through Sunday.
The festival will feature more than 36 performers, such as: Donna The Buffalo, Kevin Kinsella with members of Mosaic Foundation, Big Leg Emma, Driftwood, Jim Donovan and the Sun King Warriors, Slo-Mo, Smackdab, Alison Pipitone, The Hindu Cowboys, Tiger Maple String Band, Amanda Barton and Bill Ward, The Bogarts, Ken Hardley, Claire Stuczynski, Cindy Haight, Max Garcia Conover, John Merino and others.
The festival grounds are located at 2361 Waits Corners Road in Sherman. Tickets can be purchased at the Reg Lenna Civic Center box office, 116 E. Third St., or by phone at 484-7070. For more information, including ticket pricing, call 761-7190 or visit www.greatblueheron.com.
Jamestown Author Publishes Third Novel: Anastasia Conklin, a Jamestown native fantasy and fiction writer for young adults, has published her third novel: "Emerald Fire: The Path to Knowledge."
Conklin's first book, "The Wolf Queen" was published in 2008 and her second book, "Emerald Fire: The Winds of Fate" was published in 2010. "Emerald Fire: The Path to Knowledge" is the sequel to her 2010 release.
For more information visit www.anastasiaconklin.com of find her books on Amazon.com.
Author Kimberly Young To Speak At Warren Public Library: Kimberly Young, author of the book "The Eighth Wonder," will speak on reflections on the writing process and getting published on Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the Jefferson Room at the Warren Public Library. She will also discuss both nonfiction and fiction writing techniques.
"The Eighth Wonder" tells the story of Nicole Benson, a self-made woman who puts herself through school, sacrificing marriage and children for her career. The event is a free program and is open to the public. Call 723-4650 to register.
The GIs of Comedy To Appear At Lucy Festival: The GIs of Comedy are a comedic troupe of troops, who have taken their love of their country and brought it to the comedy stage. Their mission and their goal is to help heal their fellow soldiers with their comedy, and admission to their show on Aug. 2 is free for veterans. The show will be approximately 90 minutes long and contains adult material.
For more information visit www.lucycomedyfest.com.
To include an upcoming show or event in this column, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 487-1111 ext. 253 by Monday.
Mayville Lakeside Park Live Music And Fireworks: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Lakeside Park on Route 394.
Dunkirk Independence Day Celebration: noon to 10 p.m., Dunkirk City Pier and Memorial Park on Route 5.
Lakewood Summerfest: 2 p.m.-9 p.m., Richard O. Hartley Park, Terrace and Chautauqua Avenues in Lakewood. Total Chaos will perform from 7- 8:30 p.m., and fireworks will be held at 10 p.m.
Bruce Springsteen Tribute Band, Jersey: 8 p.m., Floating Stage in Bemus Point. A fireworks display will occur over Bemus Bay at 10 p.m.
Findley Lake Fireworks Ceremony: 9:30 p.m., Findley Lake.
Maple Springs Fireworks Display:10 p.m., Midway State Park.
Davis And Eng: noon-1 p.m., Jamestown Farmer's Market, Dr. Lillian Vitanza Ney Renaissance Center, 119-121 W. Third St. in Jamestown.
Kris Meekins: 9 p.m.-1 a.m., Peek 'n Peak, 1405 Olde Road in Findley Lake.
Naked Grace Band: 8 p.m. to midnight, Bellini Lounge, Chautauqua Suites, 215 W. Lake Road (Route 394) in Mayville.
Rob Vance Duo: 9 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., Webb's Captain's Table, 115 W. Lake Road in Mayville.
DJs Unlimited: 8 p.m. to midnight, Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Celoron.
Main Street: 8 p.m. to midnight, Pine Junction, 9757 Bailey Hill Road in Sherman.
Brian Hanna Trio: 9 p.m. to midnight, Steener's Pub, 322 Route 430 in Greenhurst.
Belle Bash Summer Concert Series With New Riders of the Purple Sage: 6:30-9:30 p.m., Chautauqua Belle, 78 Water St. in Mayville.
Bill Ward And Amanda Barton: 6 p.m., Chautauqua Institution Brick Walk Cafe, 1 Ames Ave. in Chautauqua.
Live At The Gazebo With James Earle Band with Jim Scriven and Skip Roberts: 7 p.m., Findley Lake Gazebo in Findley Lake.
Jamestown Municipal Band: 7 p.m., Allen Park Goranson Bandshell in Jamestown.
Brian K. Chase: 6-9 p.m., Chautauqua Suites' Bellini Courtyard, 215 W. Lake Road (Route 394) in Mayville.