The City of Aiken Department of Parks and Recreation Presents the 44th Annual Hopelands Concert Series The highly anticipated Hopelands Concert Series returns this April, May, and June. The first concert features The Kenny George Band, who will kick off Masters Week in Aiken with a performance in Hopelands Gardens on Monday, April 2nd at 6:30 pm. Guests are encouraged to bring a lawn chair and picnic dinner to enjoy the show. Admission is free.
Hailing from Aiken, South Carolina, the Kenny George Band has created an indelible impression with fans throughout the Southeast and Midwest, playing 250 concerts in the last two years alone. They’ve travelled the highways and byways between North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Alabama, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Missouri, reconnecting with their fervent followers and picking up new fans along the way. Their explosive live performances have made them a band on the brink of a breakout, and it’s little wonder that in 2016, they were voted South Carolina Artists to Watch by the South Carolina Music Guide.
Music’s elders and icons established the initial template for Rock ‘n’ Roll, but it’s the newer generation that keeps it thriving and moving forward. So credit the Kenny George Band for doing exactly that. Comprised of Kenny George (lead guitar, vocals, songwriter), Center Ely (steel guitar), Brooks Andrews (bass) and Scott Rankin (rhythm guitar, harmony vocals), this hardworking ensemble has earned their stripes the hard way. Performing an average of 150 to 180 shows per year throughout the heartland, they bring their music to the masses one gig at a time “Our goal has always been to connect with our audiences,” George insists. “Our music is honest and organic, and we deliberately avoid pretense. We may seem like a ragtag bunch, but there’s a passion, purpose and sincerity that underscores everything we do, and hopefully that’s apparent even the first time you hear us play.”
Event parking is located across the street from Hopelands Gardens at the Green Boundary Club, 780 Whiskey Road. Handicap parking is available at Rye Patch on Berrie Road and Hopelands Gardens on Dupree Place.
In the case of inclement weather, concerts will be held at the Odell Weeks Center at 1700 Whiskey Rd. in Gym 2. For more information, please call 803-642-7631 or visit www.cityofaikensc.gov or www.facebook.com/ExperienceAiken. Please call the rain-out hotline at 803-643-4661 for more information in the event of inclement weather.
April 2, 6:30 PM – The Kenny George Band Sponsored by Vikki & Brandi at Meybohm, The Aiken Homes Team
April 9, 6:30 PM – Southern Thunder Cloggers
Five-time national title holders from Aiken, SC. This high energy performance puts a modern twist on the traditional folk dance.
April 16, 6:30 PM – Preston & Weston Sponsored by Cumberland Village
An Aiken favorite, Preston & Weston offer spirited renditions of R&B classics, shag, beach and pop music. Their mix also includes jazz standards, reggae, blues and even some country. Preston and Weston have lots of vocals, lots of laughs, and lots of fun.
April 23, 6:30 PM – Aiken Brass
Aiken Brass is made up of six members and has been performing for over 20 years at church services, weddings, festivals, and parties. Members of the group often perform with many other organizations throughout the community.
April 30, 6:30 PM – East Aiken School of the Arts Sponsored by Aiken Performing Arts
East Aiken School of the Arts strives for academic excellence through the arts. Over 100 students who participate in the After School Arts Program will showcase their talents in orchestra, guitar, jazz, boys’ choir, tap, and ballet.
May 7, 7:00 PM – 4 Cats in the Doghouse Sponsored by The Willcox
Resident jazz band at The Willcox, 4 Cats in the Doghouse was formed in 2010 by Scott Ferguson and friends.
May 14, 7:00 PM – Southern Meltdown
A tight knit band from Aiken, bringing you the best in Country, Southern Rock and Blues.
May 21, 7:00 PM The Aiken Concert Band Sponsored by Security Federal Bank
The Aiken Concert Band has been in existence for 42 years, and is presently composed of over 70 talented musicians from the Aiken area. The band is under the leadership of Music Director and Conductor Mr. Todd Jenkins.
May 28, 7:00 PM – The Aiken Civic Ballet Sponsored by The Friends of Hopelands and Rye Patch, Inc. The Aiken Civic Ballet Company, South Carolina’s longest continuously-operating dance company. ACBC produces original ballets and contemporary dance works under the direction of Artistic Director Diane Toole Miller.
June 4, 7:00 PM – M’Aiken Music Sponsored by The Women of Woodside The mission of M’Aiken Music is to bring the joy of women’s a cappella singing to our community and to our members through performances and musical collaborations. The group primarily sings 4-part harmony arrangements of songs ranging over several decades.
June 11, 7:00 PM – Swingsation *tentative
Swingsation is a 15-piece big band with vocals performing music from the 30′s and 40′s up to today. The band specializes in music performed by the great bands of Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, and Woody Herman.
June 18, 7:00 PM – Spirit Fiddle Sponsored by Cumberland Village
Spirit Fiddle, featuring Champion Fiddler Robin Warren and Guitarist Brian Clancey, performs a wide variety of energetic music, ranging from bouncy Southern and Texas swing tunes to sweet waltzes, old popular songs, bluegrass numbers, French Canadian and Celtic jigs and reels, and Parisian musette.
June 25, 7:00 PM – The Parris Island Marine Band Sponsored by The Screenprint Factory & The Friends of Hopelands and Rye Patch, Inc. The Parris Island Marine Band has been a part of the Hopelands Concert Series for over 30 years, performing patriotic staples like John Philip Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever”. This crowd favorite completes the Hopelands Concert Series on a high note.