After seven months of planning, Moline Sesquicentennial organizers are putting the finishing touches on a “big-time” Moline 150 music, history and arts street festival that kicks off Thursday, Aug. 25. “It’s been all-hands-on-deck across many city departments, our fantastic consultant Hive, and loads of help from sponsors big and small including presenting sponsor John Deere, […]
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After seven months of planning, Moline Sesquicentennial organizers are putting the finishing touches on a “big-time” Moline 150 music, history and arts street festival that kicks off Thursday, Aug. 25. “It’s been all-hands-on-deck across many city departments, our fantastic consultant Hive, and loads of help from sponsors big and small including presenting sponsor John Deere, as well as other organizations like WQAD, Renew Moline, Visit Quad Cities and the Black Box Theatre to pull together so many moving parts and create the first big-time public festival in Moline in many years,” said Tory Brecht, the city’s communications coordinator and a Moline 150 Committee member. “It really is going to be one big birthday party, and knowing it only comes around every 150 years, we wanted to make sure it was a big deal,” he added. The highlight of the weeklong celebration that began today, is the three-day festival that runs from Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 25-27. It was made possible by a $150,000 contribution from the city and $150,000 in financial and in-kind contributions from sponsors, led by Deere & Co. and Main Stage Sponsor Mid-American Energy. Others include: Old National Bank (formerly First Midwest Bank), The Moline Foundation, Moline Centre, MetroLINK, Roof Drs, Hutchinson Engineering, TaxSlayer Center, Rexroat Sound, Wyndham and Element. Media sponsors are WQAD and iHeart Radio.
Downtown party hours are:
- Thursday, Aug. 25, 4–9 p.m.
- Friday, Aug. 26, 4–11 p.m.
- Saturday, Aug. 27 – 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. (Moline Touch-a-Truck, 8:30–11:30 a.m.) Fireworks at dusk, River Drive
Among the top Moline 150 acts are:
- Galactic is a New Orleans-based ensemble that plays a blend of funk, pop, R&B, jazz and hip hop. It’s led by Anjelika Jelly Joseph, a former American Idol contestant who toured with Tank and the Bangers.
- Celisse, a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, performer and spoken word artist who has played with Mariah Carey, Graham Nash and Melissa Etheridge.
- Pokey LaFarge brings a mix of Americana, old-time country, blues, folk and Western swing to the stage.
- Lissie, a Rock Island native whose career has spanned four albums and countless sold-out concerts featuring her own mix of rock and folk-pop.
- The Way Down Wanderers, a regional favorite from Peoria, Illinois, plays a quirky style of modern bluegrass and roots-pop.
- Banda Cerro Azul is a wildly popular traditional mariachi band. It will highlight the Friday night main stage takeover by Mercado on Fifth. In addition, The Crooked Cactus Band, AKA Los Nopales Chuecos and Grupo Innstinto, are scheduled to play the Main Stage.
Moline 150 focus on familyOrganizers stress that Moline 150 also is a family-friendly affair. In addition to a community stage where local acts will play, Moline 150 will boast a Kids Zone for families, which is sponsored by Hutchinson Engineering. We’re partnering with Quad City Arts and MuralSoup to have chalk art community murals, coloring books for the kids drawn by local artists, bounce houses and Toto the clown providing balloon sculptures for the kids,” Ms. Dale added. “Be sure to stick around for the fireworks on Saturday night as well, right before our headliner Galactic hits the stage,” she said. Street festival events will be in the area between 12th and 15th streets on River Drive, in front of the TaxSlayer Center. The main stage will face east and basically back up to the skybridge between the arena and the parking garage, Mr. Brecht said. The community stage will face north, and be located on the John Deere Pavilion patio. The Kids Zone will be across from the community stage, near the 15th Street entrance. Vendors will be lined up along River Drive, so you will essentially have a lineup of food, merchandise and beer along both sides of River Drive as you walk from 15th toward the stage. Courtesy golf cart shuttles will also be available from downtown parking ramps throughout the weekend, sponsored by Metrolink. Please note that backpacks and purses larger than a clutch are not allowed. You can bring lawn chairs, strollers and diaper bags. All items are subject to search. Parking will be plentiful, Mr. Brecht said, and visitors are reminded that there is ample parking across downtown Moline, including surface lots and other parking ramps. But motorists should be aware that the ramp across from the TaxSlayer Center will be closed for the duration of the event. For more information, visit Moline150.org or the Moline 150 Facebook page. It also features historical facts such as the ones below.
Moline Fun facts:
- Moline was first platted as a town in 1843 – the year John Deere relocated his innovative steel plow company to the City of Mills’ riverfront.
- In 1848, Moline was incorporated as a village.
- On Aug. 29, 1872, the “City” of Moline officially was surveyed and recorded.
- In 1873, John Deere became the city’s second mayor.
- Moline Riverside Cemetery is the final resting place of Francis Jeffery Dickens whose gravestone notes he was the “Third son of the Author Charles Dickens.”
- Jazz great Louie Bellson grew up in Moline. He and his equally famous wife Pearl Bailey visited Moline often.
- Actor, singer, dancer Ken Berry, of Moline, starred in some of television's most enduring series including: F Troop, The Andy Griffith Show and Mama's Family.
- Moliner Gene Oliver appeared in 786 games with the St. Louis Cardinals, Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves, Philadelphia Phillies, Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs.