Downtown Newport is Alive NOW with a New Entertainment Series

Newport is pleased to introduce the new Downtown Entertainment Series to be held throughout the spring, summer and fall at the new park on Front Street.  The series spent the month of April having a soft opening for the events that will fill the summer days and nights of 2018.  All these events are offered free of charge to the public thanks to the support of the generous sponsors.  A complete week-by-week schedule is available from the Newport Area Chamber of Commerce.  Here is what is in store for everyone.

Farmers Electric Bright Star Children’s Theatre will offer 45-minute plays throughout the summer. Upcycled Cinderella and Happily Ever After (June 8); African Folk Tails and Freedom Songs (July 3); and Chicken Little and Alice in Wonderland (August 10) will all entertain, excite and educate children and adults alike.  The first show each date will be at the Jackson County Library at 10 AM, and the second show will take place at the new park on Front Street at 3:30 pm.  In case of rain, the afternoon shows will be in the Newport Business Resource Center, 201 Hazel Street, Newport.

ASU-Newport Movies in the Park will be showing the following feature films:  Moana (June 9), Star Wars: The Last Jedi (July 14), Coco (August 9), and Ghostbusters (September 18).  The movies will be shown on a new state-of-the-art outdoor projection system with an inflatable 23 foot by 14 foot screen.  Bring a lawn chair and have the best seat in the house.

Arkansas Steel Associates Bluesday Tuesday Concerts will bring the best blues and jazz groups from Memphis and Little Rock to the Terry Scoggins Memorial Stage in the new park on Front Street.  Charlotte Taylor and Gypsy Rain (June 19), Jubilation Jazz (August 19), and Blues Boy Jag and the Juke Joint Zombies (September 18) will entertain blues and jazz lovers.  The music for this series is being coordinated by KASU Radio.

The Artist in U, presented by Unity Health, is bringing art classes to the downtown area for all ages.  Maggie Maddison and Carol Davis (Elementary Ages, June 27); Donna Hohn, Debra Jackson and Dewana McIntosh (Junior High/High School Ages, July 25); Amy Morris and Peggy Meitzen (Pre-School Ages, August 27); and Brenda Lawrence and Don Smith (Adults, September 26) will use their amazing talents to help others unleash their inner artists.  Space is limited, so reservations should be made by calling the Newport Area Chamber of Commerce at 870-523-3618.

M&P Banking, Investment and Insurance River Country Concerts feature the best of talent from central and north Arkansas.  Focusing mainly on country and southern rock, these concerts will entertain fans from the area with talented musicians who live nearby.  Queen Anne’s Revenge Dueling Piano Show as seen at Ernie Biggs (August 28) will fill downtown with music and fun.  The artists for this series are being coordinated by River Country 96.7.

The 21st Annual Depot Days Festival will be the grand finale of the Downtown Entertainment Series for the year.  As usual, Depot Days has a fantastic group of musicians who will rock the Terry Scoggins Memorial Stage on Friday and Saturday, September 28 and 29.  The complete lineup will be released in the near future, however, the following artists have already been confirmed:  the Arkansas Brothers Band, Larry McCray, Earl and Them, Cody Slaughter’s Ultimate Elvis Tribute, and Rodney Crowell.

D.R.I.V.E. (Downtown Revitalization and Improvement Volunteer Effort) is pleased to coordinate this series and provide a summer of fun, excitement and entertainment in downtown Newport.  The overwhelming support of the existing sponsors and some newly acquired sponsors allows D.R.I.V.E. to offer all these activities free of charge.  To learn more about D.R.I.V.E. and its mission to revitalized downtown Newport, contact the D.R.I.V.E. at (870) 523-3618.

Platinum Sponsors

Arkansas Steel Associates, ASU-NewportFarmers Electric CooperativeM&P Banking, Insurance and InvestmentsNewport Economic Development CommissionUnity Health Harris Medical Center

Gold Sponsors

Bad Boy Mowers, City of Newport, George Kell MotorsGeorge’s of NewportState Representative Michael John GrayGreenway Equipment, O’Connor Distributing

Silver Sponsors

All That I Am Books, C&C Distributors, Harris FordFuture Fuel Chemical Company, Jackson County Historical SocietyJackson’s Funeral HomeMize Heating & Air ConditioningNewport Area Chamber of Commerce, Newport Construction, Inc., Newport Rotary Club, Riceland Foods, Ritter CommunicationsSouthwest Steel ProcessingWRMC Newport Complex

Bronze Sponsors

David Couch, Entergy, Farmers Elevator, Grady Auctions and Realty, Iron Mountain Regional Arts Council, Jackson County Council on Tourism, Dr. Jabez and Pat Jackson, KASU Radio, Miller-Newell Engineers,  Moving Jackson County Forward, Scott Wood Ram Truck Center

Special Friend Sponsors

Boyce and Boyce PA, State Senator Ron Caldwell, Catfish Farmers of Arkansas, CenterPoint Energy, Darling Pharmacy, Dillinger Funeral Home, IberiaBank, Iron Mountain Regional Arts Council, Dr. Patti Mullins, St. Michael’s Place, Village Mall

Friend Sponsors

Bratcher Real Estate, Dr. Kelly McKinney, Dr. Guilford and Retha Dudley, Helena Agri-Enterprises, Jackson County Farm Bureau, John Minor Crop Insurance, Newport Lions Club, Mark Manning Shelter Insurance