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July 4th Week Musical Fireworks!

June 28, 2013 - Jim Price
As America celebrates its independence during the coming week, several events surrounding the July 4 holiday will showcase area musicians setting off their own musical fireworks onstage.

The biggest of those events will be Thursday’s annual Central PA 4th Fest in State College, featuring a day-long slate of live music, a 4K foot race, a heroes parade, a lumberjack competition, and one of the state’s biggest fireworks displays. See the listing below for the music entertainment schedule for the day, happening on three different stages; or click the 4th Fest link on this page for more information.

Also on July 4, Lakemont Park presents their annual Independence Day Celebration, featuring live music from R2B2 starting at 7 p.m. before the fireworks display at 10 p.m.

To start your Independence Day celebration earlier, the Blair County Community Action Agency presents their annual “Red, White and Blue” Picnic on the Plaza on Wednesday evening at downtown Altoona’s Heritage Plaza. The music kicks off at 6 p.m., and will feature Felix & the Hurricanes, the annual reunion performance of The Front, and Big Mac & the Fries. Admission is free, and food and refreshments will be available for purchase.

Although Altoona’s People’s Natural Gas Field won’t be hosting a July 4-themed music event this year (I guess the Altoona Curve actually wants to use their own ballpark for a baseball game on July 4, go figure), it will get its Irish up on Saturday afternoon with the inaugural Guinness Irish Festival from noon to 6 p.m. Local Irish music favorites Full Kilt and the Michael O’Brian Band, along with Baltimore-based Irish folk/rock band Nua, will provide the music. Irish food and drink will also be a part of the festivities. Advance tickets are available at People’s Natural Gas Field for $5; admission at the gate is $7 per person.

Always happening in conjunction with the week of July 4, the Cresson Volunteer Fire Company presents its annual Carnival from Monday through Saturday night, July 1-6. Live entertainment takes place each night; with Full Kilt entertaining on Monday evening, Felix & the Hurricanes perform on Tuesday evening, the Mario Crocetti Trio on Wednesday evening, Josh Gallagher on Thursday evening, The Boomers on Friday evening, and Locked and Loaded on Saturday night. The music starts at 7:30 p.m. each night, and admission is free.

Randy Jackson & Friends will perform at the second installment of this year’s Summer Sounds Concert Series on Friday night at Heritage Plaza. The event starts at 6 p.m., and admission is free.

For a look at a rising rock band name on the national scene, BFX/Megaforce recording group Devil By Design will bring their rousing brand of rock to Aldo’s on Saturday night. The Columbus, Ohio-based quintet is touring nationwide in support of their EP “Let the Devil Drive.”

There are lots of performers and shows to check out, so – if the creeks don’t rise – support live music this weekend and upcoming week! And if you plan to celebrate heavily while doing so, please designate a driver or call a cab!

Here is a full listing for live music on area stages this weekend and the coming week:


Summer Sounds Concert Series with Randy Jackson & Friends at Heritage Plaza, Altoona (starts 6 p.m.)

Stephen Johnopolos and Joe Carlin at Raphael’s Steakhouse, Altoona (starts 6:30 p.m.)

Born and the Beanstalk at Celtic Knot, Bellwood

kBand at Ramada Cosmopolitan Lounge, Altoona

White Shadow at Newburg Firehall, Altoona

Brand New Wings at Aldo’s, Altoona

Jim Zemlock at Our Place, Colver


Guinness Irish Festival at People’s Natural Gas Field, Altoona; featuring Michael O’Brian Band, Full Kilt and Nua (noon to 6 p.m.; tickets $5/advance, $7/gate)

2nd Annual Mike Worthington Benefit Concert Battle of the Bands at Nanty Glo Park and Pool, Nanty Glo; featuring Juke Left, 10 Million Devils, Blood Union and One Adam 12 (starts 2 p.m., donation $7 per person or $5 with non-perishable food item; food donations go to Nanty Glo Food Bank, monies go to Mike Worthington Memorial Benefit Trust and Blacklick Valley High School Scholarship Fund)


Randy Jackson, Stephen Johnopolos and Joe Carlin at Raphael’s Steakhouse, Altoona (starts 6:30 p.m.)

Ghostown Revelry at Colver Reunion, Colver (Starts 8:30 p.m.)

Phil McCaulley at John’s Sports Bar, Altoona (starts 8 p.m.)

The Sitch at Family Pizza, Altoona

Devil By Design at Aldo’s, Altoona

Giants Of Science at 4D’s Lounge, Altoona

Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band at Belmar Hotel, Altoona

PennSoulVania (hip-hop show with various performers) at Pellegrine's, Altoona

Lawn Darts at Newburg Firehall, Altoona

White Shadow at Unter Uns, Altoona

Sunset Strip at Glenn’s Place, Claysburg

hot damn at Magoo’s, Cresson

Grip at Castle Pub, Ebensburg

Punk Fiction at City Hotel, Northern Cambria

Cottonmouth at Coalport Moose, Coalport

Backlash at Pioneer Campground, Entriken

LeVeL at Lake Raystown Resort, Entriken

AED at Steele’s Tavern, Hopewell

Dakota at Schellsburg VFW, Schellsburg


Tony & Stacy at Mad Hatters, St. Boniface (starts 4 p.m.)

The Country Travelers at Beach Concession, Canoe Creek State Park (starts 2 p.m., free admission)


Hervey Ball Memorial Benefit at 30 Something, Altoona; featuring Backyard Rockers, Strait & Miller, Emberstitch and Ballz Deep

Felix & the Hurricanes at Shaw’s Bar, Altoona

Skye 2.0 at Pellegrine’s, Altoona (starts 7 p.m.)

Wertz & Pletcher at 4D’s Lounge, Altoona (upstairs)


Full Kilt at Cresson Firefighter’s Carnival, Cresson (starts 7:30 p.m., free admission)


Felix & the Hurricanes at Cresson Firefighter’s Carnival, Cresson (starts 7:30 p.m., free admission)

Open Mic/Jam Night at Bedford Tavern, Bedford (starts 6 p.m.)

Open Mic Night at the Ramada Cosmopolitan Lounge, Altoona (starts 8 p.m.)

Ty Ayers (acoustic) at 4D’s Lounge, Altoona


“Red, White and Blue” Picnic on the Plaza at Heritage Plaza, Altoona; featuring Felix & the Hurricanes, The Front and Big Mac & the Fries (starts 6 p.m., free admission)

Jack and the Country Gentlemen at Clair’s Ashville Inn, Ashville (starts 6 p.m.)

Mario Crocetti Trio at Cresson Firefighter’s Carnival, Cresson (starts 7:30 p.m., free admission)

Wertz & Pletcher at 4D’s Lounge (upstairs), Altoona

Open Mic/Jam Night at Mug Shots, Gallitzin (starts 8 p.m.)


Central PA 4th Fest, State College – Stage schedule:

Stadium West Stage: 2 p.m. – Mysterytrain, 2:45 p.m. – Biscuit Jam, 3:30 p.m. – A Day Awaits, 4:15 p.m. – Seven2Ten, 5 p.m. – AC Express, 6 p.m. – OverheaD, 7 p.m. – State College Municipal Band, 8 p.m. - ESP

Bryce Jordan Center Lawn Acoustic Stage: 2 p.m. – Sons of Resonance, 3 p.m. – Annelise, 4 p.m. – Jason Davoli, 5 p.m. – Chris Good, 6 p.m. – Joe Quick, 7 p.m. – Bob Timney, 8 p.m. – Tommy Wareham

Towne Square Stage: 3 p.m. – ChoSen, 3:45 p.m. Tir Na Nog Dancers, 4:30 p.m. The Hot Sauce, 5:15 p.m. – State College Community Theater, 6 p.m. – The Project, 7:15 p.m. – Riley Roth, 8 p.m. – Jackie Brown and the Gill Street Band, 10:15 p.m. (after fireworks) – Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band

Freedom Fest 2013 at Legion Park, Hollidaysburg; featuring Aubrey Anna, Phil Steele and Flight 19 (starts 12 noon)

114th annual Fourth of July Picnic at New Germany Grove, New Germany; featuring Johnstown Area Button Box Club (starts 11:30 a.m.) and Darrell Dumm (starts 3 p.m.) (free admission)


R2B2 at Lakemont Park, Altoona (starts 7 p.m.)

Josh Gallagher at Cresson Firefighter’s Carnival, Cresson (starts 7:30 p.m., free admission)

Steve Summerhill at Jethro’s, Altoona (starts 7 p.m.)

(More shows may be added to this list as information becomes available. Feel free to check back.)

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Blog Photos

Chrissy Miller of AC Express, performing during last year's Central PA 4th Fest in State College. AC Express returns to perform at this year's 4th Fest on Thursday.


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