MANATEE -- Music by the River, a free concert with Kim Betts and the Gamble Creek Band, JD and Zetha Lewis, the Buffalo Creek Middle School Jazz Band and cowboy poet Les McDowell is set for 2-4 p.m. Saturday at Fort Hamer Park.
Parrish Arts Council officials said they hope Music on the River becomes a regular concert series to attract residents and visitors to Fort Hamer or other nearby locations.
They also hope more Parrish residents will help with plans to revitalize the historic village. With its 134-year-old history and the Florida Railroad Museum, council members say they have the makings of a tourist destination.
They want to extend sewer service to the village to attract more restaurants and mom-and-pop businesses.
"We are going full blast," Parrish resident Cookie Jordan said of plans for the concert.
Reaction to the concert
is "very, very excited," Jordan said.
Norma Kennedy, president of the Arts Council, has said plans for turning Parrish around are ambitious, but "we won't succeed if we don't try."
Fort Hamer Park is on the south end of Fort Hamer Road, dead-ending at the Manatee River. The park is home to the Manatee County rowing training facility.
Concertgoers can bring their lawn chairs and blankets. Refreshments will be available for sale at the park.
James A. Jones Jr., East Manatee reporter, can be contacted at 941-745-7053 or on Twitter: @jajones1.