Folsom Live kicks off weekend

Art, music and theater dot the area
By: Don Chaddock The Telegraph
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From art to dancing to a pig named Wilbur, there are plenty of options for those looking for entertainment this weekend. FOLSOM LIVE The town’s biggest street party, Folsom Live, runs 5 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 26. Held on Sutter Street, organizers expect up to 8,000 visitors to come through the gates. Twelve bands will perform between the 600 and 900 blocks of Sutter Street on four outdoor stages and six indoor stages. In its fifteenth year, the concert offers a wide range of performers. They have booked tribute bands, country bands, rock and roll bands and some in between. They include country act Dave Russell, Whiskey Dawn, Jay White as Neil Diamond, and The Pussycat Angels, a tribute to the girl group Pussycat Dolls. “You start in the day time with tons of people with many genres of music playing, drawing their specific crowds,” said Christina Mastro, of Folsom, who has attended in the past. “Then its night, the street is lit up and it’s a total party environment.” While the event wraps up at 10 p.m., that isn’t the end of the party. “There are stages and bands up and down Sutter Street, but the event ends at 10 p.m. due to noise restrictions and several thousand people filter into the bars and restaurants,” he said. “It’s a real boon for the bars and restaurants.” Murray said the party continues until 1:30 a.m. indoors. Folsom Police are urging partygoers to use a designated driver, take taxis or utilize other means of public transportation. Those with a Folsom Live ticket will be able to take light rail for free. For more information, see the official program guide in this week’s Telegraph. Tickets are available at the Folsom Chamber of Commerce office, 200 Wool St., or online at GOURD FESTIVAL The annual Folsom Gourd and Arts Festival, celebrating 15 years, will take over Folsom City Lions Park on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 26-27. Running from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, the festival includes fine art, crafts, music, wine tasting and activities. Festival Director Lori Wille said the festival is about more than gourds. “I think people think it’s all about gourds, and it’s all about so much more,” she said. “It’s not just gourds, it’s also fine arts. We have painters, sculptors and fine jewelers.” The festival is organized by the Patrons of the Arts and this year they have partnered with other community organizations to help raise funds. With the current economic climate, Wille was worried about getting businesses, vendors and other organizations to back the event. Apparently, her fears were unfounded. “I am so grateful for the community,” Wille said. “I’ve never had Folsom back this event at this level. It’s wonderful.” She said the event is full and sports many new vendors. They are also anticipating a good turnout. “We’re expecting up to 6,000 people to attend,” Wille said. She said Folsom Live falling on the same weekend is actually a blessing. “I think people can make a weekend of it and do art by day and music by night,” Wille said. Wille is also excited about the raffles and silent auction planned for the festival. “Our raffles are going to be awesome. The Folsom Lake Community Concert Association has been exquisite,” Wille said. “They have collected more than 100 prizes from Folsom merchants. We’ll also have the donations from the artists at the festival. Some of the prizes are so big, we are doing a silent auction. According to Wille, Nicholson Music donated a $700 guitar and a case and Don and Donna Thomas are donating a motor scooter. One silent auction item she expects to raise the most money for the organization is a special cabinet. “Don Juvet, a real high-end cabinetmaker, is donating a hand-carved wine cabinet. He’s collaborating with Theresa Fike with Fike Studios. He’s doing the cabinet and she’s going to paint it,” Wille said. “I can’t wait to see it.” She said kids should have plenty to do as well. “We have several other booths that have some hands-on activities,” she said. “People can try their hands at a lot of different techniques and tools.” Live music will also be on tap for the festival. “The misconception is that it is only about gourds and that it’s kind of dorky,” Wille said, “but I think if people come out, they will be surprised.” LIVE THEATER If live theater is your thing, two new plays are on the boards at Stage Nine Theater, 717 Sutter St. The theater received 39 Elly Award nominations. Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None” opens at 8 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 25. The show also goes on at 8 p.m. on Saturdays and 4 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets are $22 for general admission, $20 for seniors and $15 for children under 12. “Obviously, it’s classic Agatha Christie. It used to be ‘Ten Little Indians,’ and then the name was changed,” said theater co-owner and actor Mike Jimena. “It’s directed by Maggie Adair-Upton. It’s a fun play. It’s set in the 1940s and it’s in the genre we do, it’s entertainment. It is a murder mystery, but there is no blood or gore. It’s suspenseful. … This is the third play Maggie has directed for us.” Adair-Upton is directing a cast of 10, which includes Jimena, Connie Mockenhaupt and Paul Greison. “Charlotte’s Web,” based on the novel by E.B. White, opened last weekend and runs through Nov. 8. Show times are at 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are $15 general, $13 seniors and $12 for children 12 and under. “It’s going to feature some pretty neat special effects,” said Jimena. “One of the marks of what we do is the attention to detail. We’ve already booked some school shows, so I think this is going to be popular. It’s just a charming story.” Jimena said “Charlotte’s Web” features a cast of 12 and is directed by Allen Schmeltz. “We have a ton of our main stage actors, both adult and children, in this play,” Jimena said. “Several of the actors of won Elly Awards for us in the past.” For more information, go to or call (916) 353-1001.