Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Suisun OKs return of summer concerts

From Daily Republic
By Ian Thompson

SUISUN CITY - The Suisun City Council gave the green light Tuesday to bring summer concerts back to the Old Town Plaza, starting as soon as late June.

"It is going to bring more people downtown," Councilman Sam Derting said.

The council told Community Services Director Mick Jessop to continue talks with Jim Ignatieff, the owner of Pepper Belly's Comedy and Variety Theater, who wants to organize a six-concert series.

Ignatieff recently approached Suisun City with a proposal to book the performers and handle much of the organizing of the events.

Even though June is just around the corner, the concerts' organizers believe they can put a quality product together that will bring people to the city's waterfront.

The plan calls for holding six events starting in late June at a cordoned-off area at the waterfront plaza. Tickets will be required to attend the concerts.

Entertainment will be selected from groups that perform 1970s and 1980s music, which will be aimed at the area's baby-boomer group and reduce underage drinking issues which plagued earlier events.

The main concern came from Mayor Jim Spering, who had questions about the fence that will surround the plaza saying it sent "the wrong visual message" about the public space.

Spering asked Jessop to examine that issue to ensure the fence does what its supposed to without being too visually imposing.

Suisun City had built up the popular summer concerts shortly after finishing the plaza's construction.

The concerts were cut back and then canceled three years ago because of problems with large crowds, underage drinking and because the city didn't feel it had enough staff to handle the growing number of people.

City Hall is expected to come back with a formal agreement for the concerts in the near future.

Reach Ian Thompson at 427-6976 or at

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