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October 23, 2021

Kiwanis Moves Skypark Show to Siltanen Park

On Monday, Scotts Valley began re-opening Skypark, the large grassy field at the center of the city’s recreational life, after it was damaged by firefighters battling last year’s wildfires.

But its new lease on life didn’t come soon enough for the Kiwanis Club of Scotts Valley’s “Music at Skypark” concert series, which moved to Siltanen Park and was downsized to a one-day event, set for this Sunday at 1pm.

“We had to change it this year to Siltanen Park,” said Jim Melehan, president of the local Kiwanis Club chapter. “Hopefully next year we’ll be able to get back to Skypark.”

The event will kick off with Alex Lucero and Live Again, an Afro-Cuban jazz fusion group that blends reggae, soul and funk to their musical mix.

Next, at 3pm, the Billy Martini Show is set to take the stage, with a ’70s music tribute, something Melehan says they’ve never done before.

Then, to finish it all off, The Joint Chiefs are headlining. Organizers say they will undoubtedly get the crowd rock n’ rollin’.

“They have a regional following—they’re quite popular,” Melehan said. “They just tear it up each and every year.”

This time around, though, they won’t be flanked by Extra Large, since that group has disbanded, he added.

The event is to raise money for middle and high school music programs in Scotts Valley.

Vendors such as Togo’s Sandwiches, Peet’s Coffee and Mountain Mike’s donate half of their sales from the event, which supplements the sponsorship money.

But—

“It’s a free concert,” he said. “This year we’re adding game booths, so the kids have something to do.”

It’s important to raise money for youth music programs, because they always seem to be on the chopping block, Melehan said.

“There’s a symbiotic relationship,” he said of hosting the concert to help children excel in band and similar activities. “It is music for music.”

Over the years they’ve raised $150,000.

The Kiwanis went from a three-day concert series to just a single day of fundraising, due to the uncertainty around Covid-19, Melehan said.

“It will be tough this year no matter what way you cut it,” he said. “We’re hoping for the best.”

Drew Penner
Drew Penner is an award-winning Canadian journalist whose reporting has appeared in the Globe and Mail, Good Times Santa Cruz, Los Angeles Times, Scotts Valley Press Banner, San Diego Union-Tribune, KCRW and the Vancouver Sun. Please send your Los Gatos and Santa Cruz County news tips to [email protected]

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