JAMESTOWN - Jamestown's St. Susan Center will host a monthly series of programs combining concerts by popular local musical groups with "open-mic" opportunities for other performers beginning on Friday. For the modest admission price of $10, attendees will be treated to an evening of fine live musical entertainment and a meal consisting of hearty soup, several varieties of breads, crackers, desserts, coffee, tea and hot chocolate.
Proceeds from the Soup and a Song series will benefit St. Susan Center, Jamestown's soup kitchen, which in 2011 served over 95,000 meals to a diverse client base that extends beyond the unemployed and homeless to include young parents, teens, seniors, children and persons who are challenged physically, mentally or emotionally. "St. Susan Center supports folks who lack the safety net that many of us receive from family, friends, clergy and others," explained Sue Colwell, executive director. "Providing a meal is the least and best we can do to open the door to healing and hope."
Logistical support for the Soup and a Song program is being provided by Trinity Guitars, the Jamestown-based purveyor of fine stringed instruments and audio gear. Trinity Guitars owner, Jim Holler, will be coordinating the talent for the events, as well as providing the sound system. "St. Susan Center continues to serve our community in a huge and committed way," said Holler. "Its ongoing success is a testament to the wonderful, caring people who live here, and Trinity Guitars is proud to be supporting their work through these evenings of song and hearty nourishment."
The Soup and a Song events will be held at St. Susan Center's facility at Gateway Center, also known to Jamestown residents as the former Chautauqua Hardware Building, at 31 Water Street. The public will be admitted beginning at 6 p.m., with the open-mic segment of the programs beginning at 6:30 p.m. Featured entertainers will begin playing at 7:40 p.m., and the events will conclude at 9 p.m.
Featured performers Friday are Bill Ward and a host of musical guests, including Big Leg Emma's Amanda Barton, Grampa Snazzy's Tom Swanson, and Paul Liuzzo, a veteran performer from bands such as The American People and The Bill Ward Band.
The remaining Soup and a Song winter schedule is as follows:
Feb. 17 Wind River
March 16 Kidder Alive
"Trinity Guitars, Soup and a Song series is important to St. Susan Center! The event shines a spotlight on several very talented musicians within our community and helps raise awareness of the challenges we face. As the number of guests visiting the Center grows, the financial need becomes greater. The Soup and a Song series helps to meet the need," said Colwell.
Persons interested in learning more about St. Susan Center may contact Colwell at 664-2253, extension 3. Persons interested in performing during the open-mic segments of the programs should contact Jim Holler at 665-4490, or sign up in person at Trinity Guitars, 800 West Third Street in Jamestown. The open-mics will feature acoustic-based performers of folk, blues or country selections suitable for a venue such as St. Susan Center.