Now that all of the acts for Celebrate 450! have been announced, St. Augustine residents know what to expect.
The celebration’s five major headliners were announced in mid-May and include Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell, Aaron Neville, Mavis Staples, JJ Grey and Mofro and Justin Townes Earle.
These performers will take to the main stage on the bayfront Sept. 4 and Sept. 5.
After the headliners announcement, nearly 60 local musicians and cultural acts were added to the Sept. 4-6 lineup.
Local musicians include Lonesome Bert & the Skinny Lizards, Dewey Via, Aslyn and the Naysayers, The Wobbly Toms and many more.
These acts are set to perform on various stages downtown.
Several leaders in St. Augustine’s music community approved of the headliner choices.
Jim Stafford, of Eclipse Recording Co., said the lineup was impressive and diverse.
“Well you have American blues, rock ‘n’ roll and you have Motown,” he said.
Stafford said there’s something for everyone and that’s especially true of Northeast Florida, with local favorite, JJ Grey and Mofro.
Cellar 6 Restaurant and Bar General Manager Nicholas Grassia said the JJ Grey and Mofro group has a beachy vibe.
“It’s a fairly clean family-oriented group, so I think it works,” he said.
Cellar 6 functions as a restaurant by day, but it often hosts musical performances at night.
As for the local acts, some have made a name for themselves in the local circuit performing at places like Cellar 6, Tradewinds Lounge and the Milltop Tavern.
Lonesome Bert & the Skinny Lizards upright bass player Chris Clark said adding local flavor to the headliners shows St. Augustine’s variety of musical talent.
“The local music scene here is incredible, and this is a good way to support local music,” Clark said. “Headliners come and go, but we’re here for the long run. We’re the ones playing the hard, late-night gigs, so having the opportunity to play at the 450th is a reward for the hard work.”
Local performances will be on stages located in pedestrian-only areas bounded by Orange Street, Cordova Street, Cathedral Place and Avenida Menendez.
Ryan Murphy, Cultural Events Division’s general manager, said the idea to place stages in various areas downtown stemmed from lessons learned by the city and county during Mumford & Sons’ Gentlemen of the Road Stopover Tour two years ago.
“The cool thing about Mumford and Sons, the thing we got the most positive feedback on were the stages we did around town — the smaller stages during Mumford,” he said. “Those kind of things are really neat and it was because people that lived in town and were getting off work or just looking around could see these really great acts for free.”
Pedestrian-only areas will be in place Friday through Monday with times that are subject to change based on safety assessment by the St. Augustine Police Department.
The main stage is to be located at the bayfront at Ponce Circle. It will feature a large audience area where alcohol can be purchased and consumed.
Other performance and cultural event venues include Aviles Street, Hypolita Street, the Colonial Quarter and the Gazebo.
For the full list of the schedule and performances, go to www.staugustine-450.com.