Old Hippies, flowers and art seem to be a natural fit, and all three are part of this year’s Home to Home Concert Series.
A free yearly event hosted by Bill and Kay McDonald of the Old Hippies, the Home series is billed as being “for the common good.” Since the duo requires a nonprofit to receive grant funding, it partnered with Batavia Peace Garden and GO ART! to bring two concerts in June at Jackson Square.
“Featured local artists performing will be Old Hippies, Ghost Riders, Deanna Spiotta, Don Thomas, and a selection of talented youth and seasoned artists,” Bill McDonald said. “We will los have three other artists: Leah Ford on bass guitar, guitar and French horn; Ross Chua on stringed instruments and vocals; and David Knaudt on stringed instruments and vocals.”
The first concert, at 7 p.m. June 17, will also include Chua and Knaudt in their band Crimson Crossroads. It’s a safe bet that the musical genres in these concerts will go from folksy, blues and country to contemporary. Chua’s repertoire has included the Beatles, Katy Perry and Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up, in which Chua does a mean ukulele.
Old Hippies perform guitar-rich tunes such as Blowin’ in the Wind, Three Little Birds, Fallen Eagle and James Taylor’s classic You’ve Got a Friend.
Batavia Peace Garden treasurer Carol Grasso said the group’s members will be out of the weeds and selling hotdogs during the first event June 17.
“That’s how we make our money for flags and mulch, and things for the garden,” she said.
If you’ve got a bit of a green thumb, members are looking for more volunteers, Grasso said. Pulling weeds and maintaining the landscape on West Main Street takes time and energy, she said.
“I’ve got 10 years into the garden,” she said. “We started when we retired, and now we’re just tired. We’ve been working hard.”
A second concert is set for 2 p.m. June 26. The concerts are free, and attendees are encouraged to bring a lawn chair to park and enjoy the show.
The Restart NY Regrant Program was developed as part an initiative to spur the revitalization of New York's creative economy. The program is administered through a network of local and regional organizations through a transparent peer panel funding process and is available to artists and organizations in each of the state's 62 counties. Organizations or individuals with a fiscal agent -- in this case Old Hippies have Batavia Peace Garden and GO ART! -- that meets NYSCA and GO ART! criteria may request regrant funds.
For those unable to attend in person, these music shows will be livestreamed online at Bill McDonald’s Facebook page . For more information, click HERE.
Top photo: Bill and Kay McDonald of the Old Hippies, submitted photo. File photos of Ross Chua, Old Hippies and the Ghost Riders.