The Weirton Event Center has been open for a?few weeks now, and with a few activities already held, it seems as if the word is getting out into the community.
One of the main points of having such a facility is to provide a central point in the community for a variety of events for our residents, and the Event Center appears to be off to a pretty decent start with two concerts under its belt and the first of its weekly flea markets having been held this weekend.
I'm sure there are lots of plans for the future of the Weirton Event Center, and it could take a while to get some of the crowds coming in for the activities, but, after all, this is just the first year. The crowds are sure to start rolling in and then everyone can see the kind of place the Event Center.
Building the Event Center itself has been in the works for a couple of years now, with the idea of finding a new use for the site which previously had been the home of Cove School.
The focal point this summer is the Fridays at Five concert series, where a variety of musical acts are set to perform almost every week through August.
This is a place where anyone who is interested, no matter the age or background, can go and listen to some music or just enjoy spending time with people.
Best of all, it is a place that is showcasing some of our local musical talent for all of us to enjoy.
There's a variety of musical acts lined up for this year, with just about something for everyone.
I was able to check out some of the first two concerts, and if they are any indication, the Weirton area is in for a treat over the next couple of months.
The first concert included two local groups, Chaos Killed and Legend.
It provided a good mix of music, with Legend, a favorite for many local residents, playing covers of various songs from the 50s, 60s and 70s. Chaos Killed, made up of residents from Weirton and Colliers, played several of their original, rock songs with a couple of covers mixed in.
This most recent concert, while still providing a great amount of entertainment and showcasing some wonderful talent, was barred by the weather and didn't get much of a turnout as a result.
It featured Spinning Jenny, a musical group of three sisters and their dad who play covers of a variety of contemporary hits. On Friday, they performed versions of everything from Demi Lovato to Adele to Evanescence, and even some Blink 182 and Foo Fighters.
Also performing was area native Brett Cain, who played several of his own original work during his acoustic set.
It's a shame more people didn't show up to see such great talent, but I'm sure many figured with the rain the concerts weren't going to happen.
I spoke to CVB Director Dan Greathouse, and was assured they plan on holding these concerts, rain or shine. As long as there isn't lightning or anything worse, the show will go on.
There are many more concerts planned for the rest of the summer, and I encourage everyone to check them out at some point over the next couple of months.
This week, for example, is local country group the Joseph Sisters, followed by Jill West and the Blues Attack as well as Ditch on June 15.
Gates for the concerts open at 5 p.m. with performances set to start at 6 p.m.
Flea markets are set to take place every Saturday from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m., and then starting July 12, Thursdays will feature farmers markets from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Remember also, that all of these events are free to the public thanks to receiving financial support from many area businesses and organizations.
The Weirton Event Center is just one more example of local people coming together to find some way to find some improvement for the community.
We can't be looking for a handout to help us move toward a new future. It's something we have to find for ourselves.
All too often, I hear people talk about there not being anything for us to do. Well, here is something new, even if it's just for a couple of hours on a Friday night.
I truly hope everyone takes some time to stop down to the Weirton Event Center this year, whether it be for a concert, a farmers market, flea market or some other event they might have, and realize the potential behind this new civic centerpiece.
(Howell, a resident of Colliers, is managing editor of The Weirton Daily Times, and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or followed on Twitter @CHowellWDT)