By Dan Spalding
WARSAW – The city Board of Works and Safety approved contracts for nine shows that are part of the annual Friday night concert series, but plans remain tentative due to the pandemic.
Sheila Wieringa, director of recreation for the city parks department, presented contracts for nine entertainers, some of whom had been scheduled to perform last year but saw their shows canceled because of the health emergency.
Contracts for all nine total $13,500, and a majority are covered with grant money, Wieringa said.
This year’s contracts include an opt-out clause in case of a health emergency, such as the pandemic, that would protect the city financially.
Wieringa cautioned that all concert plans are tentative and dependent upon state guidelines concerning COVID-19.
A vast majority of the shows are paid for with grant money. The entertainers include:
- Cabildo, (Latin music), May 20
- Matt Gabriel, (folk music), June 4
- Kari Holmes, (country, pop music), June 18
- Kennedy’s Kitchen, (Irish music), June 25
- Smooth Edge 2, (A capella), July 16
- Magnolia Soul, (‘80s and ‘90s music), Aug. 6
- Whistle Pigs, (brass big band), Aug. 13
- Airtight (blues, jazz, Motown music), Aug. 20
- The Kingsmen Quartet, (Gospel music), Aug. 27
As for the three major concerts of the year – classic rock, country and blues – Wieringa said she’s hopeful they will happen this year and have lined up artists for all three. Dates and other details have not been announced.
In other matters, Mayor Joe Thallemer read the oath of office to the city’s newest full-time police officer, Megan Bortner.
Bortner finished her probation period last year and is now one of 35 officers in the city. The city still has six openings.
Bortner was officially sworn in in December. A formal ceremony was conducted Friday with friends and family in attendance.
In other matters, the board:
- Approved plans to use the remaining money – about $20,000 – from a Stellar Account to help pay for moving the skate park to a new location on East Market Street.
- Approved an annual agreement with Baker Tilly, a consulting firm, for $30,000.
- Was informed by Wastewater Treatment Utility Manager Brian Davison that the expansion of the treatment plant is now complete, except for some landscaping and seeding that will be done this spring.