The new Parksville Outdoor Theatre. (Bill Flower photo)

The new Parksville Outdoor Theatre. (Bill Flower photo)

‘Rock the Park’ music showcase kicks off Aug. 5 in Parksville

Proceeds from 3-day festival will help operate new outdoor stage

The Parksville Beach Festival Society encourages music lovers to support local arts and culture by picking up some tickets to the inaugural Rock the Park event, which kicks off Aug. 5.

The music festival features 14 acts over three days in the brand-new Parksville Outdoor Theatre in the community park. It will be a celebration of old-time rock and roll, according to Lloyd Derry, entertainment chairman for the society.

“It’s going to be a great time,” Derry said. “The quality of the musicians that are going to be here is going to be off the hook.”

Proceeds from the festival will help the society operate the new $1.7-million theatre and keep rental rates low for local arts and cultural organizations, he added.

The new theatre has hosted four concerts so far, Derry said and added the community has already responded to its high-quality acoustics and sound system. The outdoor venue has attracted interest about hosting dance troupes, live theatre and orchestra performances.

Rock the Park will include world-class tribute bands playing the music of Bad Company, the Beatles, Buddy Holly, the Eagles, Heart, Joe Cocker, Linda Ronstadt and Pat Benatar.

Also in the lineup are Johnny Inappropriate, Kenny & The Cruisers, the Apollos, the Time Benders, Time Well Wasted and Younger Than Yesterday.

Parksville Beach Festival Society is trying to sell a total of 4,500 tickets.

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A one-day pass is $30 and a regular three-day pass is $60. Teenagers 13 to 18 can get in for $10 a day and children are free. Tickets are available at the McMillan Arts Centre (MAC) website and at the gate each day of the festival. Wristbands can be picked up at the MAC or at the concert gate.

The outdoor stage is owned by the city, but the society has undertaken management and operation of the theatre under an agreement with the city for the next three years.

“We really need the community to get behind it,” said Derry, who was asked to lead the theatre initiative several years ago. “Lots of hard work over five years, but our dream’s a reality now.”

The area will be fenced off for the festival, which will include food trucks and washrooms. People are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs or a blanket to sit on.

The society hopes to hold several ticketed events each summer on the new stage.

— NEWS Staff

Live musicParksville

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