We came, We saw….HE sang, AND he didn’t sign any autographs! Yep, Darius Rucker (a/k/a “Hootie”) graced Fredericksburg with his live performance at Celebrate Virginia Live’s outdoor concert pavilion near Central Park. It’s my understanding that this is Celebrate Virginia’s 2nd year hosting concerts here in the Fredericksburg area, where last Friday a few thousand folks gathered in an as yet undeveloped piece of commercial property to hear live country music.
To my surprise, I found a blog article written two years ago to the month describing the venue as the same underdeveloped piece of land.
When I heard Darius Rucker was going to headline one of the summer’s concert series, I immediately dished out $40 for a Gold Circle seat, hoping to get the most out of his performance and my “date night.” According to some locals, the concerts at this venue typically start at 6:00 pm and end before 10:00 pm.
Held last Friday night, my husband and I purposely arrived late because we had no interest in seeing the opening act, Mickie James. As it turned out, our decision was for nothing since James bailed anyway, no doubt due to the threat of severe thunder storms moving through the Fredericksburg area that evening. NOTE TO FUTURE CONCERT ATTENDEES – concerts are not cancelled due to weather and refunds are not given. Once you purchase tickets, plan on going to the show, rain or shine. In the event a band decides to back out, or is simply unable to make the show, no refunds or promises of a make-up date will be given. Check Celebrate Virginia Live’s website for additional information.
Darius Rucker really rocked the Burg! We thoroughly enjoyed the entire performance from beginning to end, however, the concert venue itself was just pathetic. A few hours prior to the start of the concert, Fredericksburg got BLASTED with major rain storms. Because the venue was physically located out in a semi-grass, semi-dirt field, patrons walked, danced and stood in varying amounts of red clay, muddy goo, and dirty water.
ANOTHER NOTE TO FUTURE CONCERT ATTENDEES – be prepared, depending upon the weather, to stand in what I just described, i.e., boots, galoshes, old sneakers…you get the point. Nice shoes, sandals are a definite no-no. You’ll also need to park on the street to prevent a trip to the car wash immediately after the concert. That is, unless you want to test out your vehicle’s “4 Wheelin Skills!” The pavilion grounds need to be completely covered with thick, full grass and/or small stones to alleviate this not-insignificant issue. I am not a landscaper so my words should be taken more as a suggestion or at least a good starting point. Having only seen photos and video, I had to wonder if this was what Woodstock concert goers experienced back in the day.
I greatly appreciate the effort being made to provide Fredericksburg residents and it’s visitors with popular live music, however, there needs to be some aggressive “fine tuning” done before I revisit this particular venue again. Lots of level grass, stone, or some other type of suitable surface would be a fantastic start to providing Fredericksburg with a true summer (all weather) outdoor concert venue, to see and hear “world-class” musicians perform their greatest hits.