Uptown concert series opens season with cover band

By Kaylee Olmsted

Oxford kicked off its 37th annual uptown music concert series June 1 with Tom the Torpedos, a Tom Petty cover band from Florence, Ky.

From July through August, 14 musical acts will perform at 7 p.m. Thursday nights (except an extra concert July 1) under the bandshell in Oxford’s Memorial Park. Organized by Enjoy Oxford, and sponsored by a range of local businesses and organizations, the bands are diverse, including classic rock, jazz and classical. 

The goal is to bring visitors to Oxford with music that everyone will enjoy, said Sally Roi, operations manager for Enjoy Oxford. 

“We really want to bring people into Oxford for the economy, but we really want to get the community involved as well,” she said.

Butler Rural Electric Cooperative, Inc. sponsored the kick-off event and gave three Kroger gift cards to audience members in a raffle.

At the inaugural concert, listeners covered the lawn by the uptown pavilion and stretched back to the splash pad and cannon area. Children danced and did cartwheels, weaving through the adult audience. All the benches and picnic tables were taken while children swarmed the animal statue play area. 

On an open section of bricks of closed-off Main Street, Michael Scoggins and dance partner Leah Wasburn-Moses started a group of dancers in an open section of the bricks. Five couples followed their lead, spinning to the rock and roll.

 Onlookers pulled out their phones to record the joyful response to the music. 

“This is perfect small-town America right here,” Assistant City Manager Jessica Greene said.

The schedule for the 2023 concert series is online here.