The monthly Music Walk returns this Saturday, Aug. 20 to the downtown Fort Myers River District for its one year anniversary.
Music Walk started in August of 2010 and was modeled after the extremely successful Fort Myers Art Walk. More than a dozen restaurants, bars and galleries became Music Walk venues, and a massive outpouring of local musicians continue to perform month after month.
The interest and attendance in the event has only grown since the first Music Walk, with the off-season summer months being just as busy as the traditional in-season months.
Music Walk founder and chairman of the event Andy Howl, who co-owns HOWL Gallery/Tattoo, attributes the success of the event to the area's need for more monthly entertainment options and a untapped grass roots music culture.
"I think Fort Myers has the potential to be a magnet for art and music, it just takes the right timing and mixture of people to make it happen," said Howl. "Downtown Fort Myers has everything to be a state-wide destination for art and music."
The first 400 attendants of this month's Music Walk will be able to get a free commemorative guitar pick, manufactured by Clayton Guitar Picks. Guitar picks will be evenly distributed among the venues. Additionally, a limited edition "1 Year Anniversary" button will also be available at the venues. Blue Music Walk balloons will decorate the historic downtown streets.
The third Saturday event features live music at over a dozen venues, plus street performers all over the beautiful downtown streets. Music Walk venues showcase a variety of music, from punk, rockabilly, indie, reggae, and folk, to piano, steel drums and more. The event is the largest of its kind regionally. Music Walk is an all ages event that starts at 7 p.m. and goes until 10 p.m. or close at many venues. Free parking is available.
Highlights of this Saturday's Music Walk include:
HOWL Gallery/Tattoo Original punk band FLF on the back patio and numerology readings by Semi-Circle Numerology inside.
Spirits of Bacchus - Live music by The Diane Russell Band.
French Connection - Blues guitarist Mike Imbasciani.
Red Rock Saloon - Featuring Stolen Fruit on stage and steel drums outside.
Downtown House of Pizza - Featuring music by Frankie Colt.
City Tavern - Featuring music by The Drunk Monkeys.
Indigo Room - Live music by rockabilly band Memphis56.
Syzygy Gallery - Featuring music by Terry Lynn
Cigar Bar - Jeff Whidby outside from 6 to 10 p.m. and Pillow Tramp inside from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Twisted Vine - Live music by Patrick Jerome.
The Veranda - Gary Goetz at their famous Piano Bar.
Check the website - www.fortmyersmusicwalk.com - for up-to-the-minute performance information or to download an event map.