Arts& Entertainment: Get ready to rock at Music and Art in Wright Park

Last summer Tacoma’s docket of outdoor summertime festivals was missing one highly enjoyable event – Music and Art in Wright Park (MAWP).

But never fear, for this free family celebration is back Aug. 11 with new energies and new music, art and crafts vendors, activities for all ages, food and more.

The lineup of bands slated to perform is really the standout attraction of the day: Humble Cubb, Mos Generator, Centre Can Not Hold, The Jilly Rizzo, The Plastards, CFA, The Dignitaries, Girl Trouble, Big Wheel Stunt Show, 13 Scars, Walking Papers, Trasholes, Fun Police and The Rusty Cleavers. A celebration of rock music in whatever form it takes – alternative, pop, punk… – MAWP showcases local rock ‘n roll bands of all types. Every 30 minutes a new band will take the stage and play a 25-minute set.

As the music plays, artist Larkin Cypher will be working on a large painting that he will complete in six hours. Then some lucky festival-goer will go home with the painting, as a silent auction will be held to raise funds for next year’s MAWP.

Cody Foster is a born-and-bred Tacoman and seasoned musician with 27 years of playing under his belt and currently part of the three-piece rock outfit CFA (Cody Foster Army). He, along with Ken Johnson, are MAWP co-directors heading up a committee of committed MAWP volunteer organizers. When asked what makes MAWP different from all the other summer outdoor festivals in Tacoma, Foster said it is all about the music.

“This one is based on rock ‘n roll. We’ll have foot-stompin’ stuff to music that’s too loud for Mom,” he said. “Nothing is digital – everyone straps on an instrument.” He recalled a special memory of a past MAWP to illustrate the spirit behind the event. “This older couple, probably in their 60s, came and had their lawn chairs and blankets and a cooler and they stayed the entire day – that was eight hours of rock music. That was the epitome of what we want to do – to make a free, fun day for the public, and we do the family thing so that everyone is comfortable there.”

Foster said support from local businesses has been generous, as has the work of volunteers to put the event on. Since MAWP is totally reliant on sponsors, vendors and fundraisers to cover the costs associated with the event, festival organizers have produced a fundraising calendar featuring some of Tacoma’s most toothsome men. This destined-to-be-a-collectors-item calendar is available now for $20 at The New Frontier Lounge, Rocket Records, The Redhot, Bluebeard Coffee and Supernova hair styling salon.

Another fundraising activity happens Aug. 4 with a spaghetti feed at Louie G’s Pizza (5219 Pacific Hwy. E.) featuring the bands Ranchero and Breaking Quarantine. Tickets are available at the door – $10 for adults and $7 for kids. The music starts at 2:30 p.m.

Music and Art in Wright Park 2012 will officially start at noon and go until 7 p.m. Keep up with all that is going on with Music and Art in Wright Park on Facebook.

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