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A spirit that is not afraid

Concourse/south to begin tomorrow in Opelika

The second annual Opelika arts and music festival Concourse/south will begin tomorrow and last all week.

The event will feature both local and national musical acts, art exhibitions from local artists, a market consisting of local crafts and food vendors and activities for all ages over the course of the week.

Co-founder of Concourse/south Richard Patton said that the event was lengthened from one day to all week in order to to more of what Opelika has to offer. He anticipates having to lengthen the festival even more for next year.

"There's so many people, makers and artists we want to give exposure to," Patton said. "We don't have a film component, we don't have anything showcasing any University talent, we don't have anything showcasing the school system's artists, so there are a lot more things we'd like to get in to, but this is what we felt was a good way to start."

Patton said this year's event will feature a larger Marker's Market, more musical acts and more participating businesses.

Proceeds from ticket sales will go towards O Grows, a nonprofit organization to educates children on how to be self sustaining through community gardening and arts programming for foster children through the BigHouse Foundation. All profits from ticket sales will go towardws future arts programming in Opelika.

Festival-goers can get week-long wristband for $25 except for the Supper and Songs event tomorrow night which will cost $60. If one does not buy a week-long pass, one has the option to pay $10 for each night one wishes to attend excluding the main Concourse/south event on Saturday, which will cost $25 without a week-long wristband.

"Our model is to keep ticket prices low, and these kind of events around the country can get pretty pricey, and we're hoping to keep a moderate price so not just the wealthy middle class get exposure to things like this," Patton said.

The festival's first day will showcase O Grows' community garden located behind the Southside Center for the Arts in Opelika and will feature music by Martha's Trouble and food at 6:30 p.m. for the Supper and Songs event.

Local artists R.C. Hagans and Paige Dirksen will be available to meet and watch while they paint murals in downtown Opelika on Monday at 6 p.m. A community fabric dyeing workshop will also be taking place at 712 North Railroad Ave.

Tuesday will feature an art installation in Red Clay Brewing Company beginning at 5 p.m., an art workshop in the Railyard at 6 p.m. and an Opelika songwriter's night at John Emerald Distillery at 8 p.m.

Vinyl printing and sales will be hosted by 10,000 Hz at Sidetrack Coffee beginning at 11 a.m. on Wednesday with a "barista throw down" at 6:30 p.m. and a secret musical performance at 8:30 p.m.

Special guest Kyes Stevens, founder and director of the Alabama Prison Arts and Education Project, will speak at the Southside Center for the Arts at 6 p.m. om Thursday with an art exhibit by local artists at 817 South Railroad Ave. at 8 p.m.

The JB Roberts Trio, Sawyer and The Brook & The Bluff will play at 712 North Railroad Ave. beginning at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.

Concourse/south's main event will take place on Saturday, will the Maker's Market opening at 11 a.m. and a long list of musical guests, including local bands Captain Kudzu, Cherry Motel, Bobby Rock 'N' Roll, Lady Legs and Dogwood Lung, will play from 11:45 a.m. to 2 a.m. the next morning.

"It's about really making our community as great, interesting and cool as possible," Patton said. "It's going to be a fun and easy event and we hope lots of people show up and take advantage of this."

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