UNION — This year’s edition of the Uniquely Union Festival promises to be the best ever when it comes to entertainment. For the two days of the festival visitors can find everything from folk, to gospel, to high-octane rock ‘n roll. In another of the many breaks from tradition implemented by the festival organizers there will be four stages scattered around the downtown area that will provide non-stop, morning-to-night musical action.
Two acts will be featured as the festival’s headliners on the Main Stage that will be located by the gazebo at USC-Union. On Friday night at 8:30 Rick Alviti will bring his “That’s The Way It Was” tribute to Elvis show to town. Alviti and his four-piece show band will take you back to a simpler time when Elvis was “the King.”
“This isn’t your run-of-the-mill Elvis impersonator,” said Uniquely Union chairperson Jami Trammell. “Rick just finished doing a show at the Alabama Theater in Myrtle Beach and has played the casino circuit from Las Vegas to New York to Hawaii with a stop for a show at the Playboy Mansion in Chicago in between. Ticket prices for his shows are normally between $35 and $55, but Uniquely Union attendees will get to see him for free.”
And, if the Rick Alviti show wasn’t enough, Saturday night will see the return on Union’s own Travis Worthy and Soul Function. Worthy and his band play a special blend of funk, blues, southern rock and oldies and are a house favorite at the House of Blues in Myrtle Beach and are known as the “ultimate strand band.”
“We are really excited to have Travis coming back home for a show,” Trammell said. “I’m sure that all of his friends and family will be coming out to welcome him back. We should have a huge crowd for this one.”
Soul Function will take the stage at 7 p.m.
Two other acts will be performing on the Main Stage. Baxter and the Basics are from the Atlanta area and will appeal to the college crowd. They will be taking the stage for the first of their three sets at 12:30 p.m. on Friday just as the USC-Union classes are dismissing for the day. On Saturday, another local musician, Templeton Maestro (Adam Powell), will put out the tunes for the hip-hop crowd beginning at 2 p.m.
The Art Walk Acoustic Stage, located across the street from the Union County Arts Council, is the venue for music with a country, folk or folk-rock flavor. Tammy Lynn Garza, Union’s 2011 Texaco Country Showdown winner, will be the featured artist and play two sets on both days. Music will be played on this stage in 45-minute sets beginning at noon and ending at 7:45 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The other performers filling the rest of the time slots are musicians who take part in the Arts Council’s “Monday Night Music” program.
Moving down one block you’ll find the Kidz Zone stage. DJ Gregg Maness will be playing music all day long on Friday and DJ Big will take over on Saturday. Also on Saturday, 2 Sydz (Jeremy Robinson and Kardarius Means) will take the stage at 6 p.m. Ultimate Rhythm Dance Company and Southern Dance Academy will also perform on this stage. And, at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. a donut-eating contest will be held.
Finally, on the last block before USC-Union, the Gospel Jubilee Stage will be home to a wide variety of Christian-flavored music. Headlining again this year will be Fallow Field from Nashville. This high-energy Christian rock band will play two sets each day. The schedule also includes performances by many of Union’s best Christian musicians.
“I don’t know of any place that people can get this much entertainment variety for any price … much less for free,” said Trammell. “If for nothing else but the entertainment alone I don’t see how anyone could not come to the festival.”
For more information about the festival, and to see a complete entertainment schedule, go to www.uniquelyunion.com.