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By MARK EVANS
STE. GENEVIEVE HERALD
For the 15th time, the Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce Summer Music Series kicks off this Friday night.
The 15th season sees the usual mix of familiar and new bands. It kicks off with the popular Silver Bullet STL, a Bob Seger tribute band that has been a favorite of local audiences during recent years.
“We have three new groups this year,” said Dena Kreitler, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce. “The other five are popular bring-backs.”
Following Silver Bullet STL, a group new to the venue, Dude Abide, will play on June 9. Formerly the cover band Ben Wah, Bob, the group featured 1980s and 1990s rock. The group has most of its members in common with Grand Allusion, the Styx tribute group that performs July 14.
Also returning is Big Love, a popular Fleetwood Mac tribute band, will be on stage. Big Love has been a big hit with fans of the concert series in the past. Another new addition will be Top Gunz, the next to last band, who will take the stage on July 21, which specializes in 1980s “hairband and arena rock and roll.”
The series continues to be popular. Tickets are already nearly gone for some of the concerts.
“This year it’s sold out before the series even started, so that’s a great feeling, honestly, to have it sold out before we have our first one,” Kreitler said.
Silver Bullet, Top Gunz sold out, Big Love nearly sold out.
“Ticket sales for the other ones are going very well,” Kreitler said. “If they don’t sell out, I expect them to be very close.”
So, don’t wait till the last minute. On the other hand, don’t panic if the website says, “Sold out.”
“I would suggest that if you’re on the website and it says sold out, just go ahead and call our office because we pulled about 20 tickets out from online sales,” she said. “So, there may be more tickets available in our office.”
She said about 10 tickets were left for Big Love. Silver Bullet and Top Gunz are definitely sold out, though, unless some of the sponsors cannot attend.
Sponsorships have also sold out.
“This is the second year we sold out of sponsorships,” Kreitler said. We maxed out at 30 sponsorships again this year, which is a great thing. We’re very excited about that.
“We want to give a big shout out to all of them and to everyone who continues to purchase tickets. We could not do the series without you and we know you guys are always looking forward to our music aeries. So we’re pretty excited about providing really great entertainment for the summer.”
The series remains at the historic, refurbished Orris Theatre.
“Of course the atmosphere at the Orris is top notch,” Kreitler said. “We’re lucky to partner with Dick [Greminger] and his family again.”
She also gave a “shout out” to Kenny Greminger and Ryan Kist, who serve as the light and sound engineers.
To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the series beginning, a concert T-shirt has been made and will be sold this year for $20 apiece.
“We have a limited number, to see how they would go,” Kreitler said. “For our 15th year we tried to do something a little different.”
She said a couple of people had suggested a concert T-shirt.
“We’re really looking forward to it,” Kreitler said. “It’s a great way to kick off your summer.”
The schedule will be:
June 2 – Silver Bullet STL (Bob Seger tribute)
June 9 – Dude Abide (‘80s, ‘90s rock, pop, alternative)
June 16 – Big Love (Fleetwood Mac tribute)
June 23 – The Big Rigs (original music)
July 7 – Trixie Delight (‘70s-90s & contemporary rock, pop)
July 14 – Grand Allusion (Styx tribute)
July 21 – Top Gunz (‘80s party rock)
July 28 – Pyromaniacs (Def Leppard tribute)