July 03--ROCKINGHAM -- The Sand Band will perform from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. today for the third concert in the 2014 Thursday Plaza Jam series held at Cole Plaza outside Rockingham City Hall.
The Sand Band performed in Rockingham for the Plaza Jam in 2007, and Kim Williams, event coordinator for the city of Rockingham, lined up the group to return this year. The Sand Band plays all over North Carolina and recently performed in the village of Pinehurst before the U.S. Open golf championships in early June.
The Plaza Jam concert series is scheduled for the first Thursday of each month from May through October. So far, The Tams played during the first concert on May 1 and Jim Quick and Coastline followed on June 5. After The Sand Band performs tonight, Too Much Sylvia will be on stage Aug. 7, the Fantastic Shakers Beach Band will play Sept. 4 and the Craig Woolard Band will hit the stage on Oct. 2 to finish out the series.
This year, said Williams, the Plaza Jam is partnering with Toys for Tots, and anyone who has attended a previous concert this year has seen Marine Corps League Detachment 1252 accepting new, unwrapped toys and monetary donations.
"We're asking for folks enjoying the concert to bring an unwrapped toy for the Marines' charity," said Williams. "They'll be the ones collecting. They have stations of little boxes set up throughout the lawn area to make it easy for people. The Marines have it so you can make monetary donations as well, which works out better because they don't have to store the toys all year long until Christmas."
Williams, who as event coordinator is in charge of booking the bands for each Plaza Jam season, will begin in October to line up acts for next year's events.
"I've already got a list of bands that people say they'd like to hear. I take requests," Williams said. "What we try to do is bring bands and big groups to Richmond County that normally people would have to drive out of town to hear and see."
In the case of inclement weather, Williams said that's when things get tricky. A make-up date would be determined by the band's availability, and anything at that point would have to be played by ear, she added.
Each band also has its own price tag, Williams said, but that's all funded by the sponsors and no tax money is involved. The 2014 Plaza Jam series is sponsored by Perdue, Dieffenbach GM Superstore, the city of Rockingham, Richmond County Tourism Development Authority, BB&T and FirstCarolina Care Insurance Company.
"We've got really good sponsors," said Williams.
Reach reporter Matt Harrelson at 910-997-3111, ext. 2750.
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