KEARNEY — After a yearlong shutdown related to the COVID-19 pandemic, concerts are returning to Kearney Amphitheater this summer. The amphitheater is located north of downtown Kearney in Jesse James Park at 3001 N. Missouri Highway 33.
“We’re back,” exclaimed Assistant County Parks Director Ryan Marcotte during a concert schedule unveiling at the June chamber of commerce meeting.
The first show of the season will take place in conjunction with the city’s Independence Day fireworks celebration, taking place this year July 2. Festivities will include a free concert from locally-known country performer Noe Palma. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. with fireworks beginning around 9:30 p.m.
“It’s a free show, it’s going to be a great time. I want everyone to come out and have a good time,” said Marcotte.
The summer concert schedule continues Aug. 7 with the Kearney Country Showdown, a showcase of national talent. Tate Stevens, from “X Factor” TV show fame, will headline the show.
Shows will continue in August with an Aug. 21 rock concert featuring classic rock legends Head East and special guest Goddesses of Rock, who will pay homage to female rock icons like Joan Jett, Blondie, Heart, Janis Joplin and Stevie Nicks.
A show Aug. 28 will showcase known blues talent during Bluesfest. Acts for this show include The Old No. 5s, Taylor Smith Band and the Rev. Jimmie Bratcher. More country music and tributes to Jason Aldean and Luke Bryan will be Sept. 25.
Oktoberfest, known for great German food, beer and dancing to polka classics from The Brian McCarty Band will close the season on Oct. 2.
“I really encourage you, if you haven’t been out to one of our Oktoberfests, to come out. It’s a really, really good time,” said Marcotte.