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Concert promoter hopes to land soul legend for Foellinger Theatre concert series

Soul music legend Aretha Franklin could be joining the concert lineup this summer at Foellinger Outdoor Theatre in Franke Park. Her appearance still is in negotiations. (From The Associated Press)
Soul music legend Aretha Franklin could be joining the concert lineup this summer at Foellinger Outdoor Theatre in Franke Park. Her appearance still is in negotiations. (From The Associated Press)
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press

The Fort Wayne Parks department also plans some changes for Foellinger Theatre operation.

Thursday, March 09, 2017 10:01 pm
The already solid Foellinger Outdoor Theatre summer concert series lineup may earn even more R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Pacific Coast Concerts, which is bringing in several of the summer concert shows, currently is in negotiations with Aretha Franklin about performing at Foellinger Theatre, possibly in mid-August, Fort Wayne Parks Department Director Al Moll told the board of park commissioners during their meeting Thursday in Citizens Square.

The "Queen of Soul," whose many hits include "Respect" and "Think," announced last month she plans to retire this year. Franklin, 74, told a Detroit TV station she planned to release one more album and that 2017 will be her last year of performing in concert.

The pop group Barenaked Ladies also has been added to the concert lineup since the parks department announced it last week, Moll said. Other bands scheduled to perform include Chicago, Kansas, ZZ Top, and Christopher Cross with guest Stephen Bishop. The parks department also will host shows by a few tribute bands and will offer several free concerts.

Tickets for Foellinger concerts with an admission fee go on sale today at http://www.foellingertheatre.org; click on “Purchase Theatre Tickets.” You also can buy tickets by calling the parks office at 427-6000 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays or by stopping by the parks office, 705 E. State Blvd., during those hours.

In related news, the parks department has made a few changes to operating procedures for Foellinger Theatre concerts:

* Concertgoers no longer will receive passes to leave and return to a show.

* On concert evenings, drivers must show a concert ticket to be allowed to park in the theater's main lot and its lower overflow lot.

* Fencing will be extended to create a designated smoking area outside the theater.

* A new security system will provide better security at theater gates.

In other business, the park board:

* Approved spending nearly $1.4 million to hire low-bidder Brooks Construction to complete significant paving work at Foster, Franke, McMillen, Memorial, Shoaff, Swinney and Vesey parks.

* Approved spending $34,500 to replace the surface of the splashpad at Memorial Park with Splashgrass, an artificial turf designed for splashpads use.

* Received an update on capital projects the parks department plans to undertake in 2017, including adding an open-air shelter and replacing existing sidewalks at Reservoir Park and constructing a new restroom and shelter building near the splashpad at Shoaff Park. 



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