By MICHELLE SCHMIDT
“Hot August Nights celebrates the whole summer atmosphere that this valley loves,” said Ben Bonfield, general manager of Pacific Empire Radio that produces the event.
But the event is not just about cars and rock music. For 27 years, Hot August Nights has gathered the community together and drawn far-away visitors, whether it’s for the concerts or the cars – or many times, both.
It’s the time of year when the streets are punctuated with polished chrome and the deep roar of souped-up engines. What beauty you don’t catch while driving around town, you can find at one of two Show and Shine events, along with the Friday Night Cruise.
“It is a weekend packed with the appreciation of the time and dedication that often goes into keeping up and caring for remarkable vehicles,” said Breanne Durham, of Beautiful Downtown Lewiston, which hosts the downtown portion of the car events that take place during Hot August Nights.
The event is really a community festival, she added, a chance for people to come together for food, music and shopping. And all of that comes back to benefit the community.
Every year event organizers try to bring in bands that were performing when these now-restored cars were just coming off the assembly line. But, unsurprisingly, the longer this event is around, the harder it is to find acts that are still performing.
This year’s Saturday concert features two bands from two eras: The Georgia Satellites, a southern-rock band of the ’80s, is followed by Foghat, a British blues-rock band that became well-known in the ’70s with their hit single “Slow Ride.”
Most bands change over time and these two – both of whom have been active for multiple decades – are no exception. But according to band websites, both bands still have members who were performing when each were producing hits in the ’70s and ’80s.
And if you didn’t catch Led Zeppelin the first time around – or you just don’t remember it for one reason or another – you’ve got a second chance at Friday night’s concert with The Led Zeppelin Experience featuring No Quarter, a Led Zeppelin tribute band. Band members take on the role of original band members and put on a theatrical performance and rock concert with a light show.
“It’s supposed to be a heck of a show,” Bonfield said. “These guys really get into it – you’d think you’re sitting at a Led Zeppelin concert.”
Performances will take place on a professional-style stage – new this year – instead of in the park bandshell. The bands will be preceded on Friday by Vial 8, and on Saturday by the Big Newtons and 7 Devils, all local bands.
Schmidt can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
if you go:
What: Hot August Night Concert Series
When: 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 23, The Led Zeppelin Experience Featuring No Quarter; 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 25, The Georgia Satellites and Foghat.
Where: Pioneer Park, 203 Fifth St., Lewiston
Tickets: $19/The Led Zeppelin Experience Featuring No Quarter, $35/Foghat and The Georgia Satellites
Tickets can be purchased at Rosauers in Lewiston and Moscow, Dyna Mart locations, Orchards Pharmacy, Lewis-Clark Credit Union locations, GNC in the Lewiston Center Mall and Pacific Empire Radio. A limited number of $5 Discount Coupons can be picked up to use towards ticket purchase at Happy Day restaurants, Joe Hall Ford, P1FCU locations, Steiner Electronics, The Diamond Shop, Tri-State Outfitters, Inland Cellular, Les Schwab locations, Jefferey’s Restaurant and Owl Pharmacy locations.
Three Days of Envy: Hot August Nights Car Show Quick Guide
Thursday – Rogers Toyota Show and Shine. Head to Rogers Toyota, 2203 16th Ave., Lewiston, 3-8 p.m. to see cars, watch a night show and enjoy hamburgers and Coca-Cola.
Friday – Friday Night Cruise. Line Main and D Street in downtown Lewiston to see these beauties in action beginning at 7 p.m. And you can roll with them, even if you don’t have the looks – at 8:30 p.m., the public can join the cruise at 13th and Main streets. The entry fee is $10.
Saturday – Saturday Show and Shine. As the day begins to warm up, you’ll find classic cars along Lewiston’s Main Street between First and Ninth streets. The Show and Shine runs 10 a.m.-3 p.m. A beer garden is at Brackenbury Square, with food and merchandise vendors lining the street.
Have a cool car?
It’s not too late to be the envy of your friends and neighbors. Pre-register for Saturday’s Show and Shine on Thursday afternoon at Rogers Toyota and on Friday afternoon at the Clearwater River Casino. If you like putting things off and waiting in line, then you can register Saturday 7-10 a.m. in front of Les Schwab in Lewiston. Registration costs $40 and includes a space at the Show and Shine, a T-shirt, a Saturday concert ticket, goodie bag, and a VIP pass to the Friday Night Cruise.