Concert promoter Toby Martin and Ogden Amphitheater manager John Nicholas have joined forces to let people know what a great place the outdoor venue, at 343 Historic 25th Street, is to see live music.
The amphitheater's summer season starts Friday, June 1, with Friday Night Rockstar, a battle of the bands and concert. The series will run at the amphitheater the first Friday each month, June through August. Nine bands will play this summer, with the winner playing a rock festival in September.
This year, for the first time, beer will be available for sale to those older than 21 at most Ogden Amphitheater events. No beer will be sold at the kid-focused Monday Night at the Movies, the Pioneer Day kickoff called Family Night to Remember, or the T Minus 5-produced A Cappellastock event on Aug. 24.
"We just want more people to know we are here, and to come downtown and enjoy it," said Nicholas. "We have to convince people to just try it once, and we think they'll be hooked. Our Monday night movies have really grown. We used to get maybe 200 for those, but now we'll have 800 to 1,500 people. We'd like to see the same thing happen with the live music we bring in, too."
Martin, who has long presented shows in venues in Utah, discovered the amphitheater last year, and immediately moved a reggae festival and an Irish festival to the venue.
"I moved those festivals here last year because this place is so nice -- a great place to bring a band," said Martin.
Martin's multi-day reggae and Irish festivals, return this summer -- on July 13-14 and Aug. 17-18, respectively. There will also be a season-closer multi-tribute band festival on Sept. 8, featuring the winning band from Friday Night Rockstar and Hell's Belles, a female AC/DC tribute.
Martin is also helping bring in talent for the Juneteenth festivities, June 15-17, including Chalie 2na of Jurassic 5 and Radio Galaxy.
Wednesday's the day
But in the end, both men see Wednesday as the night to hook the crowds and show off the amphitheater to its best advantage.
With the exception of the Billy Dean on July 18, which is a headliner night during Pioneer Days, the Wednesday shows are free. They will feature a mix of dance and music from around the world and around the Wasatch.
"The point of this is to make the Ogden Amphitheater itself an attraction in Ogden," said Martin. "This is the 10th season, and we are stepping it up to make that happen."
Many tickets, including those for the Friday Night Rockstar series on June 1, July 6 and Aug. 3, will be available at the door only.
Advance tickets are on sale now through Smith's Tix (801-888-TIXX) for four shows, with more to be added soon. The first is the Winter Decompression show, a daylong event featuring area bands, at 11:30 a.m. on June 2. This show is for ages 13 and older. Cost is $10.
Also on advance sale now is the Enable Industries fundraiser with Suzy Bogguss, at 8 p.m. June 29. Tickets are $15 general admission, or $20 for reserved seating.
On July 13 and 14, the Utah Reggae Festival, featuring Tribal Seeds and The Expendables, costs $23 in advance, and $27 the day of the show.
Tickets for the Billy Dean show are also available at $10; the concert takes place at 8 p.m. July 18.
For ticket availability and further details on the season, go to www.ocae.org.