Two weeks ago, I started my first full-time job at Grand Forks Herald in Grand Forks, N.D. I will be covering arts & entertainment and life & style for the features section, Accent. Since I’ll be writing a lot of previews and attending a ton of cool events, I figured I would use this blog to share more photos and information.
Yesterday, I attended Party on the Plaza at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. In an effort to thank the community for its support, the staff at the Ralph decided to host a free all-ages outdoor concert. Although the concert was moved indoors to the Olympic Arena due to poor weather conditions, it was still a great event. Doors opened at 6 p.m. with free beer sampling and some games for the kids. Then, singer-songwriter Tate Maris took the stage with his guitar at 7 p.m.
Unfortunately, I didn’t arrive at the event until after 8 p.m. when Tate Maris had already completed his set. I was disappointed to miss his performance, but I’m sure I’ll catch him another time. Local cover band Identity 5 was rocking out on the stage when I arrived. They played everything from Foster The People’s “Pumped Up Kicks” to Ozzy Osbourne’s “Crazy Train.” Their set ended on a bitter-sweet note as they announced it was the last song they’d ever perform together for a live audience.
After a short intermission, DJ En Fuego of PopRocks got the crowd moving with the Cupid Shuffle while the rest of the band prepped for the show. With seven performers, the Minneapolis cover band is known for their energetic performances and many costume changes. In a pre-show interview, vocalist and bass guitarist J-Bone said their concerts combine a DJ in a dance club with radio, with a Broadway musical, and they didn’t disappoint. From Lady Gaga and Katy Perry to Vanilla Ice and Run DMC, to Sandy and Danny Zuko, the band brought all our favorite singers (and characters) to the show with nearly 50 costume changes.
Although the poor weather conditions and change of locations led to low attendance, many who attended stuck around to see the entire show and an encore performance from PopRocks.
The event is over, but you can still read my full article here.
I also wrote an article about a tribute gallery being held for a North Dakota native who used zippers to create beautiful pieces of art. If you’d like to read more about it, you can view the story here.