It’s no secret that COVID did a number on the live music industry, as many longtime concert venues shut down completely while others found creative ways to keep the lights on, but at a limited capacity. One popular East Providence spot came out in pretty good shape – even after all concerts were canceled in 2020 and only a few shows followed in 2021. This summer, Bold Point Park’s waterfront concert stage is back with a full slate of shows.
From indie-rock innovator Mitski to the Rockzilla Festival with Papa Roach and Falling in Reverse taking the stage this month alone, 2022 is shaping up to be quite a season with around 20 concerts planned in a variety of genres, including country, classic blues, rock, and cover bands.
Bold Point is owned and operated by Maine-based Waterfront Concerts, a company that also manages eight other music venues. Waterfront’s marketing director Pat Shaw says, “Fans can expect much of the same. As a company, Waterfront came out of the pandemic relatively well. Unlike most, we were prepared for something like this to happen, and the Save Our Stages Act helped bridge the gap and keep employees staffed,” referring to stimulus funding designated for music
and performance venues.
“We’re coming back stronger than ever,” he notes. “It’s a heavy lift coming into this season, kind of like going from zero to a hundred. We took all the bells and whistles away and now we’re trying to add them all back for a full season. It’s a strong season – there are a lot of good shows this year.”
Patrons should be aware that Bold Point Park is in the process of going fully cashless this summer. “Drinks and lawn chair rentals and anything that the venue controls is cashless,” Shaw explains. “Food trucks and artist merch tents will usually still accept cash. We do have the ability to take cash and put it on a Bold Point gift card on site, so patrons can use that to purchase items.”
After almost two years without much happening, Shaw is glad to see live music returning to the shores of East Providence. “The music industry took a huge hit from the pandemic; 2020 was a lost season, a lot of lost revenue. Last year we did have a few shows, but you can consider that a lost season as well. It’s nothing like the full season that we have this year. We’re happy to be back.”
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