Gray Areas: Rotary Beerfest returns for outdoor event

Assorted ramblings from the world of entertainment:

• A rodent that “predicts” the weather? Not interested.

But a groundhog as a beer festival mascot? Sign me up.

There will be no worry of six more weeks of winter after the Youngstown Rotary’s third Groundhog Craft Beerfest (then again, this is northeast Ohio. Never say never). The event, which is normally held around the time that all eyes are on Punxsutawney Phil, is being moved to July 10 this year. And instead of being inside Stambaugh Auditorium, this year’s event will take place in the Stambaugh parking lot.

Punxsatawney Phil’s cousin, Youngsatowney Paul, will preside over the festivities, which will feature craft beer samples, food trucks and live entertainment.

The fest runs from 6 to 9 p.m. with general admission tickets for $40. VIP tickets are $60 and include early admission starting at 5 p.m. Tickets go on sale Friday at www.stambaughauditorium.com and by calling 330-259-0555. A limited number of tickets will be available due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols.

Since it started in 2019, Groundhog Craft Beerfest has raised more than $30,000.

• The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company will give an unsigned act a chance to perform at this year’s Hall of Fame Induction Fest for the audience of superstars and music industry executives the event attracts.

“From Garage to Glory” is a nationwide talent search for aspiring musicians. Through May 16, amateur solo artists and bands can enter the contest online at FromGarageToGlory.com by submitting an original song and telling the story behind its inspiration. A panel of judges will pick three finalists, and the public will be able to vote for their favorite between June 21 and July 16.

In addition to performing at the event, the individual or band will receive $10,000, transportation and hotel accommodations and a private VIP curator tour of the Rock Hall.

To be eligible for the contest, performers must be at least 18 years old, never been signed to one of the three major record label groups (Sony, Warner, Universal) or their subsidiaries and never sold more than 10,000 physical units of a song or album or had any song stream more than a million times on any single streaming platform. The act also must have at least three to five original songs.

• The organizers of WonderStruck, the music festival July 24 and 25 at Lakeland Community College in Kirtland, announced this week they will cut off ticket sales at 11:59 p.m. Friday due to the current capacity restrictions and the number of concertgoers who purchased tickets for the 2020 event and rolled over their purchase to 2021.

After Friday all purchase inquiries will be wait-listed and filled on a first-come, first-served basis if and when capacity limits increase.

The festival features 14 bands each day with Walk the Moon and Third Eye Blind topping the bill on July 24 and Portugal. The Man and AJR headlining on July 25.

More information is available at wonder struckfest.com.

• While live music is starting to return, one holdover from 2020 remains — drive-in concerts, either in person or on screen.

Bon Jovi will present a never-before-seen concert on more than 300 drive-in screens nationwide, including Warren’s Elm Road Drive In, on May 22. Tickets start at $68 per vehicle (good for up to six people) and go on sale today at www.encorenights.com.

Andy Gray is the entertainment editor of Ticket. Write to him at agray@tribtoday.com.


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