By Aubrey Sitzman
Brown County CVB
Some of the country’s finest fingerstyle guitar players will return to Brown County at the end of this month for the fifth annual Indiana State Fingerstyle Guitar Festival. From a world-class competition and concert to guitar workshops led by the pros, July 29-31, 2016, are sure to be three days of pickin’ perfection.
A weekend filled with toe-tapping fun, guests will be dazzled by the art of fingerstyle playing and the sheer talent of top guitarists.
Festivities will get underway on Friday, July 29 with a free Friday Night Kick-Off Party from 7 p.m. – 11:30 p.m. This year’s opening party is bigger and better than ever. Not one, but two stages of music will be running at the Brown County Inn in the Corn Crib Lounge and in the Town Hall Room.
Not only will guests be treated to performances by nationally-ranked acoustic guitarists, but local favorites Cari Ray & The Loaners as well. The Pine Room Tavern also will have live strumming on Friday night, including past Fingerstyle Festival winners, such as Kade Puckett, along with other guitar greats. Food and drinks will be available for purchase at both locations.
The tunes will continue on Saturday, July 30, with the Festival’s main events: the competition and concert. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Brown County Playhouse, 40 of the country’s top fingerstyle guitarists will battle it out for a grand prize and bragging rights as the best during the Fest’s competition. Spectators are sure to be amazed by the skill flowing from the fingertips of this year’s competitors.
At 7:30 p.m. the top three finishers from the day’s competition will take the Playhouse stage during the evening concert, delighting guests with their pickin’ prowess. Nationally-acclaimed father/son duo Tim and Myles Thompson will then deliver a show stopping performance of their own. The evening concert also will feature Michael Kelsey, who is ranked among the top 100 guitarists in the world!
All-day passes, which include admission to both the competition and concert, are available for $22.50. Guests can upgrade their ticket to VIP status for $32.50. VIP tickets include admission to the competition and concert, as well as a swag-bag valued at $50 and reserved seating at evening concert. All-day and VIP ticket holders will receive a wristband allowing them to come and go at their own leisure. Evening concert only tickets also are available for $17.50. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Brown County Playhouse or online atwww.browncountyplayhouse.org/tickets.
That’s not all! To cap off a weekend filled with great music, guitar workshops will be offered on Sunday, July 31. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Brown County Community Foundation, eager guitarists will be able to learn the ins and outs of fingerstyle fun from experts Lance Allen and David Youngman, two of the top players in North America.
From strumming for beginners and intermediate level techniques to guitar competition tips and strategies, workshop-goers will learn how to perfect their pickin’ game. Workshops are $20 per class and can be paid upon arrival.
A complete list of workshops and additional details can be found online athttp://indianastringfest.com/schedule/workshops/.
Experience the world of fingerstyle firsthand at the Indiana State Fingerstyle Guitar Festival, July 29-31 in Brown County. It is sure to be a finger pickin’ good time!
For more information on the Indiana State Fingerstyle Guitar Festival, please visit http://indianastringfest.com/ or call 812-750-0257.
By Josh Duke
Hendricks County CVB
Registration has opened for one of Hendricks County premier golf fundraisers that has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for local charities for nearly 15 years.
The 13th Annual Wings of Golf Outing will be Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2016, at Deer Creek Golf Club in Clayton, Indiana.
This year’s event begins with registration at 9 a.m. and tee time beginning at 10 a.m. Entry includes participation in a Florida Scramble with complimentary driving range, green fees, cart, breakfast and dinner. You can enter a team or as an individual, and spots still remain.
A live auction, raffle, hole activities and other surprises have become a staple of the event and will return this year. All proceeds from the event benefit Hendricks County Senior Services, Mental Health America of Hendricks County, Sheltering Wings and Sycamore Services.
Visit www.VisitHendricksCounty.com/Wings-of-Golf for more information, event pricing and to register online. Sponsorships are also still available by contacting Tracy Whetstone at Tracy@VisitHendricksCounty.com.
By Danielle Pieratt
Indiana Dunes Tourism Intern
I’ve been in Indiana Dunes Country for almost three months now while doing my summer internship. It’s been like a beach vacation without having to drive 15 hours to Florida.
Fortunately, I have a couple weeks left to enjoy the rest of the summer up north by relaxing on the beach, attending events like Indiana Dunes Tourism’s 30th Anniversary Celebration and eating at award-winning restaurants like Lucrezia Cafe in Chesterton.
One of my favorite parts about living up north has been the beach. There are so many different trails and nature hikes to explore. If you are a fan of biking, there are plenty of bike trails to ride on that get you from one place to the next. At the end of July, Indiana Dunes Visitor Center is unveiling a new bike path called the Dunes Kankakee Trail that travels from the Visitor Center for three miles to Indiana Dunes State Park, and which will eventually go to the Kankakee River.
If you are thinking about venturing up north into Indiana Dunes Country to explore what it has to offer, a helpful guide is the “Must See and Do” in the Indiana Dunes Country Activities Guide. It features 14 options on exiting things to do.
The Broken Wagon Bison Farm was one of the most exciting things I got to enjoy from this list. On the tour, you are able to come face to face with over 100 of America’s largest native land mammals. This is especially exciting as it’s Indiana’s bicentennial this year.
No matter what you choose to do while visiting Indiana Dunes Country, it is sure to blow you away. The food, people and atmosphere can’t be beat… And that’s coming from an Indy girl. Visit www.indianadunes.com for more information.
Editor’s Note: Danielle Pieratt is a senior attending Ball State University, working toward a public relations degree. She is currently an intern for Indiana Dunes Tourism, the official tourism agency for Porter County.
By Dal Sanders
The Society of American Magicians
More than 400 magicians from around the world will magically appear (via planes, trains and automobiles) July 12-17, 2016, in downtown Indianapolis, Indiana. The Society of American Magicians Annual Convention will be held at The Indianapolis Marriott Downtown and will feature the world’s greatest magic acts, illusions and entertainers.
The multi-day event will feature performances by famous magicians from around the world, with several stage shows, close-up shows, magic lectures, and special events. There will be a contest that will highlight close-up magic acts and another one for stage performers. There will be exhibitors selling magic props, books, videos, publications, collectibles and items related to magic and other variety arts.
The convention also features events for young magicians and alternative events for non-magicians. Gala stage shows are held every night for the conventioneers and tickets to these exciting evening events are also sold to the public. Tickets for the public shows are available from Eventbrite. Go to http://www.magicsam.com/page/indytickets for more information.
The Stars of Tomorrow show highlights some of the best up-and-coming magicians from ages 7-17. This show, a highlight for over 20 years at the Society of American Magicians’ annual convention, has featured magicians including Matt Franco (a recent top winner of America’s Got Talent), and other magic television stars including Megan Knowles-Bacon, David Boyd, Trigg Watson, Krystyn Lambert, and current stage show producer, Kayla Drescher.
If you are downtown, you will likely see some impromptu shows. The first ever Table-Hoppers Magic Championship will be held at the Champions Bar and Grill, located on the ground floor of the convention hotel. You will be able to see amazing magicians preform at your table and Champions will also offer specialty magic-themed beverages and daily specials until 1:00 AM.
“This is a chance for magicians to come together, hang out and enjoy each other’s company,” said S.A.M. Past National President and Convention Producer Mark Weidhaas. “It is also a chance for non-magic audiences to experience and enjoy the art of magic.”
The Society of American Magicians was founded on May 10, 1902, in Martinka’s famous magic shop in New York City, New York. It is the oldest and most prestigious magical society in the world and for over a century it has promoted the ideals shared by Harry Kellar, Harry Houdini, Howard Thurston and more than 47,000 others world-wide who have held membership in the Society. Those ideals include the elevation of the Art of Magic, the promotion of harmony among magicians, and the opposition of the unnecessary public exposure of magical effects.