A face-melting farewell to summer

Alabaster city and Parks and Recreation officials will cap off several months of work July 31 during the city’s first-ever Summer Teen Music Festival.

What began as an informal student survey will end as an eight-hour-long rock festival at Veterans Park featuring bands from Alabaster and throughout the state.

“Basically, the event came about after the mayor and I went into the schools and asked kids what kind of events they would like to see in the city,” said Alabaster Parks and Recreation Director Ricky Nance, noting Alabaster Councilman Scott Brakefield also played a major part in planning the event.

“The kids said they really like CityFest, so we wanted to have an event kind of like that featuring local bands,” Nance added.

After interviewing Alabaster’s students, the city officials began planning a summer packed with teen-oriented events of all kinds. The result was a teen-focused Movie in the Park event and a month of “Tweens and Teens Tuesdays.”

“We have had 100 or more people each week we have had the Tweens and Teens Tuesdays,” Nance said. “The response has been really good.”

Each week, Parks and Recreation staff members have partnered with “Games 2U” to hold a Guitar Hero tournament.

During the Summer Teen Music Festival, the top two players from each Tweens and Teens Tuesday will battle each other to determine the top electronic rocker in the city.

The July 31 event will also feature food, games, inflatable water rides and more, Nance said.

“It’s going to be hot outside, so we are going to have inflatable water slides,” Nance said. “We tried to have something for everyone.”

The highlight of the event will be the multitude of local and Alabama-based bands, which will be performing throughout the day.

Mr. Blackwell’s Petty Thieves will take the stage at 1 p.m., followed by One More Round at 2:15 p.m., 6:41 at 3:30 p.m., Minersa at 6 p.m. and Infinite Youth at 7:15 p.m. Event organizers may also add a sixth band at 4:45 p.m., Nance said.

“A couple of these bands have been playing a good while, but some of them are just now getting started and are trying to get their names out,” Nance said. “We got a good reception from all of them.”

Because the event will be the first of its kind in the city, Nance said he is hoping to see a large turnout.

“If it’s successful, we are planning to have it again next year,” Nance said. “If 500 people show up, that will be great.”