Thousands pack Helena Amphitheater for Jazz in the Park
Published 12:42 pm Monday, July 13, 2015
By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer
HELENA–Amphitheater Park was rocking for a few hours in Old Town Helena as Magic City Smooth Jazz’s popular event, Jazz in the Park, returned on Sunday, July 12.
Each summer, Magic City Smooth Jazz presents Jazz in the Park, which is a series of free performances in various local parks, according to the website.
Local Alabama jazz musicians open for headlining acts, thereby providing a platform for them to showcase their talent and artistry.
The artists who performed at the Helena Amphitheater were the RAW Jazz Trio and Willie Bradley and Helena Mayor Mark Hall was very excited about the turnout.
“I would say there’s close to 2,000 people here,” said Hall. “This is definitely our biggest turnout yet. This is great.”
The event was free to the public and many families and couples brought lawn and tailgate chairs to enjoy the smooth jazz sounds for a few hours Sunday evening.
“It’s just so nice to have something like this so close to home,” said Helena resident Tammy Eddins.
Magic City Smooth Jazz was founded in 2010 with five parks that played host as venues, and in the span of five years, the organization has grown to 16 parks according to Bernard Lockhart, founder and executive director of Magic City Smooth Jazz.
Lockhart praised the efforts of the city of Helena and ensured that his organization will definitely be back to play in Helena in the future.
“My tech crew said that this is one of the best parks to come to from a logistics standpoint,” said Lockhart. “The power and everything is available, the hospitality from Mayor Hall and just his staff, it’s really a great venue and we love it. Everything that we need is available here to us and it’s just a great park and venue.”
Magic City Smooth Jazz is a non-profit corporation whose mission is to expose and engage audiences in underserved communities to various styles of jazz music.
For more information on Magic City Smooth Jazz and Jazz in the Park, visit Magiccitysmoothjazz.com.