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Jazz At The Lake Festival celebrating 20th anniversary

Festival and movie nights provide great family entertainment next month

After a two-year hiatus due to COVID, the popular Jazz At The Lake Festival is back and ready to share jazz with music lovers far and wide.

This will be the 20th anniversary of the festival, taking place Aug. 19, 20 and 21. Events will be running at six different venues in town.

“This is a grassroots, family-friendly festival,” said Eric Allison, co-founder and festival board president, adding that all ages are welcome at the concerts and there’s something for everyone.

“Some people have a vision of jazz, that it’s all hardcore,” said Allison. “But our festival isn’t like that. We have all kinds of jazz, as well as blues, swing, a big band orchestra.”

Allison said it’s easy for concertgoers to pick and choose the music they like. If they find a band they like at a particular venue, they’re welcome to hang around. If they want to hear something different, they can move on to something else.

There will be seven artists performing at this year’s festival, including Allison and Fischer.

In the past, the festival has attracted somewhere in the ballpark of 2,000 people, Allison estimated. But as for the future, Allison said it depends on how this year goes after two years away.

“From what we see in other places, people are anxious to get out,” said Allison. “We think we’re going to have good crowds, but we’re going to have to play it by ear.”

Allison said the festival is still recruiting volunteers and there’s a volunteer form on their website for anyone that wants to sign up. Tickets for the various concerts are available online for purchase, as well as a schedule of events.

For those who prefer the big screen, the Town of Sylvan Lake has three family movie nights lined up for August.