MANASQUAN — Algonquin Arts Theatre kicked off its month-long Local Summer Series with the first of three dockside concerts Wednesday night.
The Local Summer Series will not only bring entertainment to the theater’s patrons and showcase dozens of performers, but will also help the Algonquin raise funds during a time of uncertainty due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The series includes three live outdoor concerts, 24 days of video performances and stories delivered via email and social media, a 50-50 raffle, merchandise and other ways to support the Algonquin.
Wednesday night’s performance featuring local band Spare Parts, transformed the theater’s loading dock into a stage and the parking lot, a socially distanced seating area.
Spare Parts, formed in 2012, includes Sean Watson on guitar and vocals, Bob Giunco on drums, Richie King on piano and vocals, John Perry on bass and vocals, and Tommy LaBella on saxophone and percussion.
Live music will return again next week on Wednesday, Sept. 9 when Chris Pinnella — a vocalist who has toured with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra — takes the stage.
Mr. Pinnella’s show will feature “new interpretations of classic songs by iconic artists such as The Beatles, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen, The Righteous Brothers, Tom Petty, Ray Lamontagne, Elton John, Billy Joel, Bruce Springsteen, Simon and Garfunkel, and more,” according to the theater’s website.
Concerts begin at 7 p.m. and are free to attend. Patrons should bring their own chair. Social distancing and masks are required; squares will be marked on the parking surface to help patrons sit separately, and space is first-come first served. Full policies are listed on the theater’s website: algonquinarts.org.
The series also includes 24 days of video performances and stories, beginning Tuesday, Sept. 8 through Thursday, Oct. 1. Daily videos will be posted on the theater’s website, social media and sent by email.
To show support for the theater patrons may purchase a Local Summer Club Membership available for $96. Membership includes a T-shirt, the ability to reserve a space for a Dockside Concert and one year of Algonquin membership benefits.
All membership fees will be matched as part of the Local Summer Matching Funds Drive. Memberships can be purchased online or by calling 732-528-9211. T-Shirts are also available for $24 each.
The goal of the matching funds drive is to raise $48,000, with each individual contribution matched up to a total of $24,000 — made possible by a pledge from Janice Blanton, of Wall Township.
As part of the event’s fundraising efforts, 50-50 cash raffle tickets are on sale with the drawing scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 1 at 3 p.m. via the theater’s Facebook page. Tickets are one for $20, three for $50 or 10 for $150.
Tickets can be purchased on select Wednesday and Thursday nights on Main Street [in front of Booktowne and Jesse Gallery], by phone at 732-528-9211, online at algonquinarts.org or from members of the Algonquin Board of Trustees.
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