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Homecomings, Festivals and Fairs, Oh My!

July 26, 2013 - Jim Price
Festivals, fairs, homecomings and other community gatherings provide plentiful live music options on local and regional stages this weekend and upcoming week.

Ebensburg’s annual Homecoming celebration kicks off this Friday evening with the “Downtown Shutdown” Festival in downtown Ebensburg, highlighted by a performance from Cleveland-based Santana tribute band Evil Ways at the intersection of High and Center Streets. The concert begins at 8 p.m., and admission is free. Saturday features a variety of Ebensburg Homecoming activities throughout the day, capped by a performance by local classic rockers Totem at 8 p.m. and a fireworks display on Lake Rowena.

Roaring Spring stages its annual Spring Dam Weekend this weekend, with plentiful activities centered around Spring Dam in downtown Roaring Spring. Musically, the Good Seeds perform on Friday evening at 7 p.m., Acoustic Stew takes the stage at 7 p.m. Saturday, and Felix & the Hurricanes provide the music during the Cruise In event on Sunday afternoon starting at 1 p.m. Admission to Spring Dam Weekend events is free.

The African American Heritage Project of Blair County presents their annual marquee event this Saturday, the 20th annual African American Heritage Festival at Penn State Altoona. The festival runs from noon to 8 p.m., and features a variety of arts and crafts, food and refreshments, children’s activities, and musical and other entertainment. Some of the musical highlights include the 3 p.m. performance of Pittsburgh’s Ibeji Drum Ensemble, specializing in West African drum music and dance. Performing at 5 p.m. will be Altoona native and San Diego-based singer Deejha Marie; with a vocal style recalling Diana Ross and Aretha Franklin, she has opened for such names as The Temptations and The Whispers. And 10 members strong, Pittsburgh’s House Of Soul closes out the festival’s music slate starting at 6 p.m., performing a wide mixture of ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s funk, soul and R&B favorites. Admission to the African American Heritage Festival is free; there is a $1 donation for parking.

The 153rd annual Clearfield County Fair swings into full gear next week, with musical entertainment featured every night. Clearfield-based country favorites Randy Clark & the Renegade Ride perform on Monday night, pop singer Victoria Justice entertains on Tuesday night, southern rock stalwarts Lynyrd Skynyrd take the stage Wednesday, local country group Dirtkicker performs on Thursday night, Brantley Gilbert entertains next Friday night, and ska/punk rockers Less Than Jake close things out next Saturday.

And '80s era headbangers have reason to celebrate on Saturday evening at Altoona's Railroaders Museum, as Los Angeles-based Def Leppard tribute band Pyromania rocks the flatcar stage. Pyromania has toured nationwide, and will perform songs from throughout the Def Leppard catalog, from early years to '80s and more recent hits. Local hair band tribute favorites Hair Force One - who normally perform several Def Leppard favorites in their show - will cover the rest of the '80s hair band spectrum sans Def Leppard and start the evening's foray into the "Decade of Decadence" beginning at 6 p.m.

There are lots of performers and shows to check out, so 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 the Fabulous Flashbacks at Heritage Plaza, Altoona (starts 6 p.m., free admission)

The Good Seeds at Spring Dam Weekend, Roaring Spring (starts 7 p.m.)

Evil Ways (Santana tribute band) at downtown Ebensburg (Ebensburg Homecoming, starts 8 p.m., free admission)

Joey Mummert Memorial Show at Pellegrine’s, Altoona; featuring Bootglue Jones, Up Your Arsenal, Tyler James, Sleepy Saint, Shizz Mugga and more (starts 7 p.m.)

Brand New Wings at Aldo’s, Altoona

kBand at Ramada Cosmopolitan Lounge, Altoona

Born and the Beanstalk at Buccinese Society, Altoona

Matt Pletcher at Zach’s, Altoona

Punk Fiction at Thirsty Dawg Taverne, Patton


African American Heritage Festival at Penn State Altoona; featuring T. Sawyer (1:15 p.m.), Local Showcase (2:15 p.m.), Ibeji Drum Ensemble (3 p.m.), Southside Steppers (4 p.m.), Deejha Marie (5 p.m.), House Of Soul (6 p.m.) (free admission, $1 parking donation)

Jim Mosey at Beach Concession, Canoe Creek State Park (starts 2 p.m., free admission)

Greg Burley at Swiss Club, Altoona (starts 4 p.m.)


Alive @ Five Concert Series at Railroaders Museum, Altoona; featuring Pyromania (Def Leppard tribute) with Hair Force One (starts 6 p.m.)

Nosium, Apollocreed, Misery, Hollowbear at Pellegrine’s, Altoona (all ages, starts 6:30 p.m.)

Acoustic Stew at Spring Dam Weekend, Roaring Spring (starts 7 p.m.)

Totem at Lake Rowena, Ebensburg (Ebensburg Homecoming, starts 8 p.m.)

Screamin’ Ugly at Aldo’s, Altoona

Yesterday’s Classics at Family Pizza, Altoona

The Good Seeds at Belmar Hotel, Altoona

Conner Gilbert at Buccinese Society, Altoona

The Syrins at Zach’s, Altoona

White Shadow at Cresson American Legion, Cresson (starts 5 p.m.)

A.X.E. at Castle Pub, Ebensburg

Drew Dodson at Mad Hatters, St. Boniface

Shades Of Leather at City Hotel, Northern Cambria

Second Edition at Saxton Sportsmen’s Club, Saxton

Seize Fire at Bedford Elks Bowling Alley, Bedford

The Sitch at Schellsburg VFW. Schellsburg


Felix & the Hurricanes at Spring Dam Celebration, Roaring Spring (starts 1 p.m.)

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


Pat McGinnis & Friends at Valley View Park Amphitheater, Altoona (starts 6 p.m.)

White Shadow at Carrolltown Church Picnic, Carrolltown (starts 7 p.m.)

Felix & the Hurricanes at Shaw’s Bar, Altoona


Randy Clark & the Renegade Ride at Clearfield County Fair, Clearfield (starts 8 p.m.)


Randy Clark & the Renegade Ride (5 p.m.) and Victoria Justice (8 p.m.) at Clearfield County Fair, Clearfield

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


Bottom Shelf Blues Band at Clearfield County Fair, Clearfield (starts 2 p.m.)


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

Big Mac & the Fries at Highland Park, Altoona (starts 7 p.m., free admission)

Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bottom Shelf Blues Band at Clearfield County Fair, Clearfield (both concerts start 8 p.m.)

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

Discourse, Nine Six Nine, Apollocreed and more at Pellegrine’s, Altoona (all ages; starts 7 p.m.)


Dirtkicker at Clearfield County Fair, Clearfield (shows at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.)

Downtown Live! with Locked and Loaded, on the Diamond, Hollidaysburg (starts 6 p.m.)

The House Band at Legion Park Wing Festival, Hollidaysburg (starts 6 p.m.)

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

Conner Gilbert at Zach’s, Altoona

Flight 19 at Belmar Hotel, Altoona

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

To report additional shows or corrections to this listing, email information to

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Blog Photos

Pittsburgh's Ibeji Drum Ensemble, during a 2010 performance at Penn State Altoona's Slep Center. The Ensemble will bring their drum-based African music and dance to the African American Heritage Festival at Penn State Altoona on Saturday.


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