New concert replaces Richland Bike Bash
BY KAYLA PONGRAC
Our Town Correspondent
Andi Cveykus, fundraising coordinator at Richland Township Volunteer Fire Department, said she’s thrilled to announce a new concert series designed to benefit the fire department.
“Station 3 On Stage Summer Concert Series” will replace the now-defunct fundraiser, “Richland Bike Bash,” which was previously held in conjunction with Greater Johnstown/Cambria County Convention and Visitors Bureau’s annual “Thunder in the Valley” motorcycle rally.
“Change is hard to do,” Cveykus said, noting that “Richland Bike Bash” took place for well over a decade at the Station 3 Richland Township Volunteer Fire Department, located at 1321 Scalp Avenue in Richland. “But we feel if we do something each month, we’ll get more crowds, less overhead and give people a chance to try lots of great food. I’m getting a great response from everybody already.”
The free concert series kicks off May 18; the remaining concerts in the series are scheduled for June 19, July 19 and 20, and Aug. 24.
Local food vendors and food trucks will be on-site during each concert, but those vendors and trucks will change a bit from month to month in order to add variety.
The vendors who have confirmed their participation are: Smoke ‘Em Up BBQ; Flair of Country Catering; Morguen Toole Company; Pappy D’s BBQ; Firehouse Subs; PRESS Bistro; Mama-Licious; My Girls Deli; The Phoenix Tavern; Grumbling Gypsy; Pappy’s Family Pub and Dixie Smoker; The Original Pie Shoppe; Ruga Rue Beef Jerky; Tall Pines Distillery; Old Towne Distillery and B&L Wine Cellars.
To add a sense of excitement and anticipation to each event, Cveykus will announce via Facebook the vendors that will be on the grounds a few days prior to each concert. The department’s official Facebook page can be found under “Richland Township Volunteer Fire Department.” Concert updates will be posted there throughout the summer as well.
The Firehouse Pub will be open during every concert. Firefighters and volunteers will be serving alcoholic beverages, including slushies. The Firehouse Pub is sponsored by Inco Beverage. Non-alcoholic drinks will also be available for purchase.
All money raised at Firehouse Pub will benefit Richland Township Volunteer Fire Department.
All bands are to play on Mihalko’s Fire and Water Restoration Stage, and all concerts are to be held rain or shine (in case of inclement weather, the concerts will be moved inside the building).
The first concert, “Strengthening of the Prohibition,” will feature Even the Odds from 5:30 to 8 p.m. and Bastard Bearded Irishmen from 9 p.m. to midnight on May 18.
“Even the Odds is a local band that’s going to get the party started,” Cveykus said. “Bastard Bearded Irishmen are full of energy and are very entertaining. It’s going to be a fun night.”
June 19’s theme is “Backdraft Lot Party.” Undercover will play from 6 to 8:30 p.m. followed by Octane from 9:30 p.m. to midnight.
“These are the two bands that were our ‘Richland Bike Bash’ staples,” Cveykus said. “They have a good local following, so they’re going to bring a lot of people to the pavement.”
July 19 and 20 will be “Rock the Weekend.” On Friday, The Boomers will perform from 6 to 8:30 p.m. and Inside Out from 9:30 p.m. to midnight. On Saturday, Frick Brothers will perform from noon to 2 p.m., That’s What She Said from 3 to 5 p.m., Stone Bridge from 6 to 8:30 p.m. and Octane from 9:30 p.m. to midnight.
“The Boomers are our classic rockers,” Cveykus said, “and Inside Out is a little heavier. The Frick Brothers is an acoustic duo, and That’s What She Said features Terri O’Leary, who used to be the lead singer for Ribbongrass, on vocals. Stone Bridge will bring more rock to the stage, followed by Octane. You could say that as Saturday’s line-up goes on, the music gets heavier and louder.”
Cveykus noted that even though these concerts may seem geared toward adults, she still tried to make them as family friendly as possible.
“I encourage families to come listen to music and get something good to eat,” she said.
The last concert will take place Aug. 24. “Oldies All Day” will bring at least three oldies bands to the Mihalko’s Fire and Water Restoration Stage, but the final line-up has yet to be announced.
Cveykus said she and her fellow organizers are hoping for nice weather and large crowds.
“These concerts will support the local fire department,” she said. “We are a non-profit fire department, and a fully volunteer-based fire department. Any fundraiser and event that I host pays for the everyday operations for the three stations that we maintain: Geistown, Solomon Run and Scalp. We need — and are grateful for — the community’s continued support.”