By Jim Nickerson
(Apple Valley)– Concerts in the Courtyard, sponsored by the Lewis Operating Corp., kicked off the 2011 season with a great concert by Cloudy Reed. The band, comprised of Michele Reed on guitar and vocals, Kelly Cloud on Bass guitar, Dave Roddy on lead guitar and Chris Beck on Drums, showed amazing versatility, moving from the classic “House of the Rising Sun” to the swing hit “Stray Cat Strut”.
“It’s as good as what you see down below” said Jake Sarver, long time Apple Valley resident. He and his wife Shawn were attending a courtyard event for the first time, and were very impressed by the quality of the music and the ambience of the venue. “We like it” said Shawn, who also admitted to being a musician herself.
Kelly Cloud said he had been playing Bass for about 30 years, the last three with “Cloudy Reed”. He has known Michelle for almost 20 years, having met doing Karaoke.
The crowd spanned generations, with toddlers enjoying the open air courtyard experience as mush as the senior citizens. There were even some “off site” participants, enjoying the music from the parking lot in from of Ross.
The Town of Apple valley and the local merchants filled up the bands break time with raffle drawings. Among the prizes were a $25.00 Target Certificates and a $35.00 “Panda Feast” certificates from Panda Express.
Julie Gilmer, Event Coordinator for the Town of Apple Valley said they would continue with the drawings at each concert. She advised people to look for the Town of Apple Valley table and ask for the free raffle tickets when they arrive at the courtyard.
Many of the audience enjoyed dinner under the gazebo, with appetizing selections from Round Table Pizza, Quiznos and Fresh Wok. Some took advantage of “Taco Thursday” at Del Taco, combining the concert with “Cinco de Mayo” celebrations.
“It’s pretty nice, to be able to come and listen for free” said Josette Wright who came with her husband Tim. “I’ve lived in the area since 1967. We never had anything like this when I was growing up here”.
The “Concert in the Courtyard” series continues next Thursday with “Jaye Sooter and Friends.”