The event that celebrates music, arts and roller derby partners with downtown for a two-day affair.
Teaser Image by Jeff Sampson Photography assisted by Eli Show, and courtesy image from Doomtree.
Last year the 605 Summer Classic premiered on Aug. 14 at 8th & Railroad Center with an impressive crowd of around 2,000 – a record for the most people at the historic Eastbank location. Eight bands, including The Nick Rallis Band, We All Have Hooks For Hands and headliner Soulcrate Music took the stage, providing the day with an eclectic mix of music.
Not only was there an array of local musical talent, but there was local athletic talent as well. The Sioux Falls Roller Dollz tightened up their skates and had their first live outdoor bout where they defeated their opponent, the No Coast Roller Girls.
“The setup was great and the weather was just perfect,” said Jayme Nelson (or “Pain Maker”), co-fonder of the Sioux Falls Roller Dollz. “All of the chairs were taken, and the ones on a rack, which weren’t supposed to be touched, kept disappearing because of the great number of fans in attendance.”
The 605 Summer Classic, which serves as an end of summer bash, was something 605 magazine sales and marketing director John Snyder thought was missing from the community. “I felt like music events for this age group hadn’t been a priority,” he said.
Though there are events like second stage at JazzFest for young adults, Snyder felt there should be a day committed just for them. “This city deserves its own festival specifically for this age group,” he said.
And apparently the city agrees. Mayor Mike Huether was there to blow the first whistle for the Roller Dollz and gave a speech about the importance of the youth and downtown. Jennifer Schmidtbauer, vice president of Downtown Sioux Falls, Inc., said young adults are a vital part of the area who appreciate the culture.
“They’re environmental, they like pedestrian-friendly, they like to walk, they like to support the local economy,” Schmidtbauer said. “They make a concerted effort to make it down here and they want to be part of the scene.”
And that is why when Snyder approached Schmidtbauer to have the 605 Summer Classic a week earlier this year to combine it with the Downtown First Friday Block Party, she thought it was a perfect fit.
“We thought ‘what a nice way to draw extra attention to our Block Parties and reach a different kind of demographic,’” she said.
The partnering will have the Block Party act as a 605 Classic Warm-Up event on that Friday, August 5.
For those unfamiliar, the Block Parties were a response to a 2008 survey that stated people wanted more live music. Schmidtbauer explained, “It was also a promotional tool for the Eastbank and First Fridays.”
Now in their fourth year, the Block Parties have grown. “I think our first Block Party had around 200 people,” Schmidtbauer continued,” and this past June we estimated around 1200 for sure.”
Along with music, the Block Parties are in their second year of including Battle For The Arts, a live an interactive battle between artists armed using only a marker that goes on between musical acts. DrawnTown Sioux Falls will be at the 605 Summer Classic Warm-Up as well, sitting among the crowd creating new, original art.
Schmidtbauer said the Friday event, presented by Sanford elite1 Individual Insurance, will have bands “the same flavor and nature” of the 605 Summer Classic with Petrified Man performing and Pasque headlining.
The free event starts at 6 p.m. and will have tickets on sale for the 605 Summer Classic. Schmidtbauer is looking forward to the pairing. “It’s just a great working relationship,” she said.
And quite the warm-up it is. The main event on Saturday, presented by Sanford elite1 Individual Insurance and University Center, is gearing up for an amazing lineup. Things are switching up a little this year, with the Roller Dollz outdoor bout vs. the Eastern Iowa Outlaws starting the event off at 2 p.m. This will showcase the derby team’s rookies.