STEUBENVILLE, Ohio (WTRF) – After months of silence, downtown Steubenville is once again filled with the sounds of summer.
The Fort Steuben Summer Concerts debuted Thursday evening to show the community that the COVID-19 pandemic can’t keep an Ohio Valley tradition down.
Organizers say they couldn’t be more excited to welcome everyone back.
So, it’s really become a staple in the community, something we’re very proud of and we look forward to every year.Paul Zuros, Operations Director – Historic Fort Steuben
But this year, music fans had to wait a little longer than usual.
Like everything else, the 2020 concert series was delayed due to the virus, leading to some measures to keep the crowd spaced out.
We’re just concerned about bringing groups together, I think that was the reason why things were put on hold with all the requirements and regulations.Paul Zuros, Operations Director – Historic Fort Steuben
Fort Steuben has taped off every other seating section as a safety precaution.They’re also asking concertgoers to stay seated as much as possible.
Kicking off the series is the band Aftermath, who recreate some of the biggest hits of the ’60s.
Drummer Kim Pizzino explained how difficult the last few months have been not only for performers, but for related industries like concert venues and food vendors.
COVID-19 has not only been devastating to musicians—it’s been devastating to concert series. It’s devastating across the board for all involved, so we’re hoping 2021 will be a better year for all of us.Kim Pizzino, drummer of Aftermath
He says his group has something for everyone who comes to see them, like many of the artists who are lined up to entertain this year.
You may not know the Turtles, but you know the song ‘Happy Together.’ You may not know it’s the Byrds, but you know the song ‘Mr. Tambourine Man.’
As one of the first concert series of its kind in our area, Fort Steuben led the way for other communities to host their own, and they’re ready to lead the Valley once again in bringing back entertainment.
We do have visitors from Weirton, from Wheeling, from Bellaire, from all over the place, so we’re really excited and eager to welcome them back.