Jake Slater featured as musical entertainment

EVART — Music, food and fun will abound in Evart during a Downtown Development Authority benefit to raise money for the Evart Summer Concert Series stage, which is located at the Evart Depot.

Raise the Roof, which will feature a '50s theme, will begin at 5 p.m. and feature live musical entertainment by Elvis impersonator Jake Slater and a meal from Mishler’s Drive In, which is celebrating 50 years in business. The meal will include a chili dog or hamburger, fries, coleslaw and a beverage. The event will take place in the community building at the Osceola County 4-H FFA Fairgrounds.

"Jake is one of our most popular shows and people travel from all over the place to come see him," said DDA Director Al Weinberg. "With Mishler's, they are such an iconic restaurant in Evart. We're helping them kick off their 50th year in business and they were gracious enough to help us out."

Money raised from the event will help improve the setting for Summer Concert Series performers at the Evart Depot. Plans include to center the stage, which will allow for improved seating and viewing, make it larger and compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, move the existing gazebo to serve as a sound booth, upgrade power to the stage and install stage lighting and a permanent roof above the stage.

The concert series, which takes place from June through August, is a well-loved event in the city. It's becoming more popular as time goes on, and Weinberg said changes need to be made to accommodate the surge in attendance and performers.

"We've been getting bigger bands and crowds to the event," he added. "The original stage was built at a time when we were seeing crowds of about 100. Now, we're hosting crowds of about 500 people and it ends up being an awkward show environment."

The current stage size is 12-by-25 feet, and plans are to increase it to 20-by-30 feet.

The entire costs of desired upgrades are about $20,000, but Weinberg hopes to raise about $5,000 from the Raise the Roof event alone, which will begin some of the construction. Possible grant opportunities and other sources of fundraising will help take care of other costs, he added.

Tickets are $20 apiece, but attendees can sponsor reserved tables for $300, which includes front seating and a logo featured on a sponsors banner at the event. For those only wishing to see Jake Slater, tickets are $10.

For more information or to purchase tickets, call Weinberg at (231) 734-0185 or visit one of many downtown businesses.