Mountain Sound Celebration

Catch Some Tunes with the Mt. Shasta Concert Series…

Now in its tenth year, the Mt. Shasta Concert Series is hoping for another exciting summer. “The concerts are family-friendly. They’re also free, so anybody can come. And while the quality of the music and bringing in great bands absolutely matters to us, the main thing is bringing the community together,” explains Jason Allen, president of the nonprofit that puts on the concerts. “Every concert is really an eclectic mix of people. Some come just for the music, but I think most are there to see their friends and wind down for the weekend to recharge for another week.”

Photos by Taryn Burkleo

Allen has been involved with the concert series since he, John Friesen of the Friesen Foundation and friend Andrew Brown came up with the idea in 2014. “On the day of the very first concert, John called me because he needed help putting up a tent. So, I came to help him, and I’ve been involved ever since.” And while putting on the series is a ton of work, Allen insists it’s more than worth it. Their main emphasis is providing funding for high school music programs, along with some elementary school and Boys and Girls Club music programs, but other nonprofits also benefit from concert sales.

Photos by Taryn Burkleo

“We have one small tent where we sell beer that’s donated by Sierra Nevada, and then we sell raffle tickets for prizes at each concert,” Allen says. “At the last concert, we throw all those raffle tickets from the season back in to be raffled for a mountain bike locally donated by the Fifth Season.”

Allen says one of the coolest fundraising events they’ve done happened right after the Carr Fire. “When the Carr Fire happened, it was obviously really devastating for the community of Redding. And when the concert came around that Sunday, we were on the fence about having it. One of our usual bands called Secret Society was supposed to be playing and they called us up and asked what we wanted to do. Finally, we decided yes, let’s do this. So, we raised a couple thousand at the concert selling beverages and stuff, but that night we also raised $13,000. That felt pretty good.”

Photos by Taryn Burkleo

Given Mt. Shasta’s proximity to Interstate 5, Allen says they’ve had some success recruiting bands traveling to and from larger markets, but many performers come from other longstanding relationships or word of mouth. “Since it’s a free concert, we have no ticket sales so we can’t really afford a ton of big bands. We always do some reaching out to bands that we’ve used in the past. We also look around regionally in California and Oregon, and other music festivals. I tried to get a band called Leftover Salmon, and the manager told me that band was booked, but he had another band I might like, which worked out. And last year we had Brit Taylor, who’s a really up-and-coming country star, but then after we met her, we found out that her husband plays, so we might have him back next year. It’s sometimes just kind of random.”

Photos by Taryn Burkleo

The concerts are always held at Shastice Park, and have become a Sunday staple for many Mt. Shasta locals. “When a concert is going and the mountain is so beautiful in the background, it’s pretty epic. And then you see so many familiar faces out having fun, and I’m always reminded that this is why we do this.”
Allen also has some expert advice for any first-timers.

Photos by Taryn Burkleo

“There’s not a lot of parking in the park, so the sooner you get there, the better. And it’s just grass, no real seating, so people need to either bring a blanket or some chairs. And because it’s Mount Shasta, it can be really nice at six o’clock, but by the time the concert’s over at nine, it might be getting a little chilly. So, layers are a good idea even in the hottest part of the summertime. And while we do sell beer and wine and there are usually food trucks, you don’t have to. If you prefer to bring your own stuff, you can. Whatever works best for you. Just come and enjoy the concert, and maybe even meet some new friends.”

Mt. Shasta Summer Concert Series
Shastice Park, 800 Rockfellow Drive, Mount Shasta
All concerts begin at 6:30 pm, with six weekly concerts beginning this year on July 7

Photos by Taryn Burkleo
About Megan Peterson

Megan Peterson is a freelance storyteller who loves her family, her pets, and Northern California. Her favorite part of writing is finding flow, and she always relishes a touching human story. Aside from Enjoy, she’s typically busy writing and producing for television, having created more than 220 hours of on-air content on networks ranging from National Geographic to Netflix.

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