WARSAW — The Warsaw Parks & Recreation Department is working hard on making this summer full of music and concerts for the community to enjoy, including the Rockin’ For Riley concert this Friday, June 17. The department has hosted a number of concerts at Center Park for years, from big name bands to less well known musicians. How do they go about securing their performances?
“First of all it’s based on … what sponsorship money we have and how much the band costs,” commented Sheila Wieringa, the recreation director of the Parks & Recreation Department.
The department can negotiate with the band directly, but sometimes they work through a promoter. “This year we worked with a promoter. In past years we have not. Using a promoter does take a lot of the weight off my position and the superintendent as far as negotiation goes, but there are still a lot of fine details you have to iron out,” Wieringa said.
Among those finer details is the band schedule. “Then [the process] comes down to availability of the bands … This year we were fortunate enough to bring in two headliners … There’s some preparation that takes place as far as locating a band and finding price ranges before the of the year, but we can’t actually contract anyone until January,” Wieringa stated.
When asked about how they entice bigger name bands, Wieringa had this to say, “If they’re close to our price range and we know they’d be a big draw we might try to negotiate the price, but price drives almost entirely who we’re able to pull in … It all depends on what money is coming in and what they cost.”
The efforts of people like Wieringa don’t seem to be for nothing either. These concerts are big events “For the classic rock and country concerts we generally have anywhere from 6,000 to 7,000 attendants,” she said.
Wieringa continued, listing the benefits the concerts can bring to Warsaw and the surrounding area. “It’s a huge draw for the community and surrounding communities … We’re drawing not only from Warsaw’s population but the surrounding counties … It helps the economy, is also free and can appeal to all economic backgrounds,” she said.
Jack Russell’s Great White and Dokken will be coming to the Center Park Plaza in Warsaw together in the free Rockin’ For Riley concert at 6:30 p.m. Friday, June 17, at Central Park’s Glover Pavilion.
Jack Russell’s Great White will lead the show followed by Dokken at 8 p.m. The bands both gained significant popularity in the 1980s and despite several break ups and reorganizations they have continued making music for their fans in one form or another since their inception.
No pets or alcohol are allowed at the concert. Coolers are welcome and there will be food vendors available. It is recommended that attendee’s come early in order to get a good seat.