www.carmelartsanddesign.com                111 W. Main Street, Suite 140 Carmel, IN  46032


Date:  June 26, 2009
Media Contact:
Lauren Hammond

Carmel Arts & Design District Celebrates Summer with Third-annual “Rock the District”
National recording artists Dave Barnes and Aimee Allen join local performers at free day-long music festival

June 26, 2009
CARMEL, IND. – The summer’s hottest free concert event returns to central Indiana on July 11 as Rock the District – the Carmel Arts & Design District’s full-day music mecca and shopping extravaganza – is poised to once again bring more than 10,000 people to Old Town Carmel from across the Midwest.
Special events and activities are centered around music from local bands on three different stages from noon to 9 p.m. The event will end with performances by feature artist Dave Barnes, with special guests Aimee Allen and Red Umbrella.
Hailing from Nashville, Tenn., Dave Barnes brings his unique mix of acoustic pop, soulful rock and R&B, to downtown Carmel.  Carmel favorite Aimee Allen returns to Rock the District for an encore performance with songs from her soon-to-be released album, “A Little Happiness,” recorded in Indiana after her move to Carmel from California.  Prior to Barnes and Allen, Canadian indie rockers Red Umbrella will also take the stage to entertain audiences.
To help celebrate Rock the District, more than 100 specialty shops, galleries and vendors in downtown Carmel will be open to greet visitors, many with special activities, sales and drawings.  Local businesses will join the festivities by offering an array of activities for all ages, including a climbing wall, games from Ace Game Room and Smart Car test rides. Fashion-savvy shoppers will also delight in vendors selling artisan jewelry, accessories and apparel, as well as other unique gifts.
Although typical fair food will be available, Rock the District provides a perfect opportunity to sample the many tasty treats available at downtown’s unique eateries. Mudbugs Cajun Café bayou treats will be served street-side, as well as Joe’s Butcher Shop’s grilled specialty meats, Woody’s Library Restaurant’s pulled pork sliders, Bub’s burgers and more.
New this year is a Rock ‘n’ Recycle Area, featuring everything needed for a green-living lifestyle.  The eco-friendly area includes free- and fair-trade clothing from around the world, recycled arts and crafts, information about green living and more.  Recycling containers will be prominently displayed throughout the Rock ‘n’ Recycle area and other festival areas to encourage visitors to reduce, reuse and recycle.
The Kid Zone is another new addition, complete with entertainment from Sugar Buzz Sweet Parties for Kids and Indy Dance Academy; an air guitar contest; face painting; build-your-own stuffed animal booth; games with prizes; and other kid-focused products.
Special rock-related art exhibits will be displayed throughout the District during the event, including a showing of black-and-white images of classic rock idols such as Tom Petty, Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, shot by photographer Faith Cohen.  Janice Smith will showcase her decoupage/photography of rock and film legends, and Caroline Tabac-Shank will exhibit her 8-foot sculpture of stainless steel and chrome entitled GUITAR II.  Mickey’s Autograph Arena will show art by well-known rock stars such as Grace Slick, Brian Wilson and Keith Richards, available for sale at the festival.
Twelve full-size wooden guitars painted by local artists will be displayed at the Carmel Clay Public Library and in Arts & Design District businesses for the event. The Arts & Design District Business Association of Carmel (ADDBAC) will auction off the painted guitars to fund local artist participation in District events and to begin a scholarship fund for Carmel High School art students.    
“Although Rock the District is primarily a music festival, we are excited to also use the event to share the works of art inspired by rock and roll,” said Sherry Mielke, Director of Operations for the Carmel Arts & Design District.
Of course, for many Rock the District attendees, the music is the main draw of the festival. This year’s lineup features a range of genres from singer-songwriters, pop/rock, reggae/funk, classic rock, covers, blues and even a Halloween-themed cover band.
Local performers scheduled to appear include:
•            Alex Hughes
•            A Common Year
•            Blue Luster
•            Danny Isaacs Band
•            Jeremy Vogt Band
•            Kingsley Street. Band
•            Liz Fohl
•            No Alternative
•            Past Due
•            Shaded Sound
•            Tax Brandywine
•            The Graveyard Stompers
•            William King
“Rock the District is fast becoming the summer’s can’t-miss event in central Indiana,” said Mielke. “It’s not only a great opportunity to enjoy a day of free music; it’s the perfect way to introduce the District to people who are visiting for the first time.”   
Parking is available at the Carmel Lions Club parking lot and other public parking areas, as well as on-street parking in the District.
For a complete list of musical and performing groups, a schedule of event activities and participating merchants, or information about other Carmel Arts & Design District events, visit www.carmelartsanddesign.com/rockthedistrict or call 317.571.ARTS (2787).

The Carmel Arts & Design District is the Midwest’s newest, premier setting for the arts and design industry. Already it has attracted well over 100 businesses, including art galleries, antique dealers, furniture and interior design showrooms, even a race track design company! There are restaurants, boutiques, creative service providers, and an eclectic variety of specialty retail stores. And the list of merchants continues to grow.

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