Rock the Plaza concerts will return for three Saturdays in August, Allen County Public Library announced Thursday.
Before the pandemic, Rock the Plaza concerts took place weekly through the summer, filling the plaza to the east of the downtown library. There were no concerts in 2020, and the library had previously canceled this year's series because of COVID-19 concerns.
“We know that a lot of people were disappointed by our initial decision back in April to cancel. Now that COVID-19 positivity rates are much lower and the vaccine is widely available we felt more confident that we could host Rock the Plaza without jeopardizing the health of our community,” Stephanny Smith, director of community engagement, says in a news release.
In a follow-up phone call, Smith says she thinks people are a lot more comfortable with crowds than they might have been in April when the initial decision to cancel this summer's series was announced. As an example, she points to last weekend's title-cinching game where a full-capacity crowd of 10,477 people watched the Fort Wayne Komets win the Kelly Cup at Memorial Coliseum.
The free outdoor series begins Aug. 14 with El Camino Hot Tub, Justin Bailey, Sunny Taylor Band and the Illegals. The performers Aug. 21 are Morning After, the Harp Condition, APQ and Accidental Blues Band. Closing out the series Aug. 28 are Strange Waters, Catfish Dave P, the Debutants and Fort Wayne Funk Orchestra.
Concerts are at 6 p.m. at the library, 900 Library Plaza. Concertgoers are encouraged to bring their own seating and snacks but leave dogs and glass bottles at home. 816 Pint & Slice will have burgers and beer for sale.
Rock the Plaza began in 2007 after the library's expansion project was completed. It typically draws hundreds of people and takes a long time to plan.
“No one is more excited about this than the library's team at Access Fort Wayne and the volunteers who produce the event,” Smith says in the news release. “Normally it is a year-round planning process for Rock the Plaza and they managed to pull this together within weeks.”
For more information, call 421-1200 or go to ACPL.info.