Wednesdays at the Plaza brings a refreshing, free musical treat to downtown Aurora

Scott Tipping Syndicate kicked off Wednesdays at the Plaza this summer in downtown Aurora. Photo by Tony Scott

Scott Tipping Syndicate kicked off Wednesdays at the Plaza, a free concert series this summer in downtown Aurora. Photo by Tony Scott

This summer brings a refreshing, free musical treat to downtown Aurora every Wednesday evening through Aug. 17.

The Wednesdays at the Plaza free concert series kicked off its first full season last Wednesday with the fiery blues and rock of the Scott Tipping Syndicate and this week will feature Aurora singer-songwriter Greg Boerner. Every Wednesday from now until Aug. 17 will feature a different local or regional musical artist – and sometimes two – from 6 to 8 p.m. at Millennium Plaza on Stolp Avenue.

Wednesdays at the Plaza was the brainchild of Marissa Amoni, Aurora resident and promoter of all things downtown Aurora. Amoni organized a few shows last August. When the August shows were a success, Amoni asked me, a friend, music lover, and journalist, to join her in organizing and booking the first full season of Wednesdays at the Plaza. I couldn’t be happier with how the lineup turned out for our first full season.

While no alcohol is allowed at the Plaza, non-alcoholic beverages, food, cushions and blankets are welcome. Most dates will feature a food vendor or food truck.

We had a lot of help from local sponsors, which include the City of Aurora, Ald. Michael Saville, Aurora Downtown, Aurora Fastprint, The Yetee, Vicki McCoy of Re/Max, The Compounder, Karademas Management, Rocktown Adventures, Culture Stock, AKA Dance, Konen Insurance, and Reuland Food Service.

Our goal, first and foremost, was to have a free, fun, and diverse selection of music from which to choose. We believe we met and exceeded that goal. Let’s have a look at the lineup of the remaining Wednesdays at the Plaza artists:

June 29: Crystal Gravy featuring the RPMs. Crystal Gravy, from DeKalb, is a love-struck, male-female duet who uses strong vocal harmonies, along with their guitars, piano, and keytar, to construct all original material with biting lyrics and catchy melodies.

July 6: Anderlik, Otto & Church. This progressive bluegrass group showcases traditional bluegrass, blues, classic rock, cinematic compositions and more. These guys are amazing musicians by themselves and together they make such sweet sounds.

July 13: Saint Astro. The music of Aurora’s own Saint Astro has a unique indie folk and jazz groove that must be heard to be believed.

July 20: Etha’s Hip-Hop Showcase. Aurora hip-hop artist Etha is bringing some of his talented friends from the local scene to show off the rich talent this area has to offer.

July 27: Jake Mack Trio. Local singer-songwriter and guitar virtuoso Jake Mack has been working hard on a new record and it should be available at this show. He and his trio will be laying down Mack’s original songs and tasteful covers in the rock, blues, and classic rock vein.

Aug. 3: A Light Sleeper. This band describes themselves as a quintet that “continues to explore different concepts and approaches, combining myriad elements and styles to not so much defy genre as politely brush it aside.”

Aug. 10: Small Shiny Things. This group of local artists includes singer-songwriter Kevin Trudo, Chris Bauler, Jay Olaszek, Matt McCain and Ron Donovan. They are bandmates and friends, and it’s a fun time when they get together.

Aug. 17: Town Band. The final Wednesdays at the Plaza date is a real treat, with the Town Band. This group of Fox Valley musicians is a brass band that performs traditional favorites. Come on down!

— Tony Scott

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