(Photo Caption: Memphis Soul Revue.)
HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK, Arkansas — The first of four “citywide block parties” scheduled each Thursday in June will be held Thursday (June 3) in the Bridge Street Entertainment District in downtown Hot Springs from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
It’s part of the first Bridge Street LIVE! series of free concerts and entertainment events sponsored by Visit Hot Springs.
“We’re putting on a citywide block party for Hot Springs,” Visit Hot Springs CEO Steve Arrison said. “We’re inviting everybody to come down to the Entertainment District, break out the folding chairs, enjoy a free concert and share the good feelings of an outdoors June evening in Hot Springs.
“There’ll be music by The Memphis Soul Revue and Big Papa Binns, and outdoor dining and beer tents by downtown businesses. There’ll be vendors, arts and crafts shopping and plenty of fun.
“All ages are invited to come enjoy the evening, but alcoholic beverages will be restricted to adults 21 or older. It’ll be a great way to welcome summer to Hot Springs.”
The newly established Entertainment District guidelines allow patrons over 21 to freely walk the district with beer, wine or spirits as long as those beverages are in a special Bridge Street LIVE! Entertainment District cup. The Bridge Street LIVE! Events will be confined to an area immediately surrounding Bridge Street that does not include the west side of Central Avenue, Arrison said.
Outdoor dining areas and beer tents will be set up by Brick House Grill, Picantes, Maxwell Blade's Theater of Magic, Steinhaus Keller, The Vault, Copper Penny and Porterhouse.
Bridge Street LIVE! shirts and hats will be available for purchase in the vendor area. Other vendors include artists, crafters and other local businesses.
Dogs must be on a leash.
“The city Board of Directors established the new entertainment district in June 2020 but the COVID-19 pandemic prevented us from taking advantage of the regulations governing the expanded district,” Arrison said. “We thought the Bridge Street LIVE! series would be a great way to inaugurate the Bridge Street Entertainment District in a portion of the district.”
Visit Hot Springs Marketing Director Bill Solleder said, “We have lined up a great group of bands to perform free concerts on the four Thursday evenings in June. There will be an upbeat variety of music by regional bands that will perform from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursday nights.”
The establishment of the entertainment district allows for more relaxed rules governing activities, food and beverages within the district during special events.
The ordinance adopted by the Board of Directors expanded the boundaries of the former Broadway Entertainment District, moving them north to include the Hill Wheatley Plaza parking lot, south down Malvern Avenue to Church Street and Broadway to Market Street and east up Convention Boulevard to Opera Street.
The old boundaries were from Spring Street to Broadway.
For the Bridge Street LIVE! concerts the Hill Wheatley Plaza portion of the district will not be used nor will the area of Malvern Avenue from Convention Boulevard to Church Street, Arrison said.
The Board of Directors retains control over activities in the district.
The entertainment lineup:
• Thursday, June 3 — Memphis Soul Review playing Memphis rock and soul
• Thursday, June 10 — Arkansauce, a bluegrass band
• Thursday, June 17 — The Irie Lions playing reggae
• Thursday, June 24 — Funkytown playing Memphis funk
For more information call Bill Solleder at 501-321-2027.