Thanks to the grassroots fundraising efforts from a group of concerned citizens, the town of Blythewood now has its own outdoor event venue and will host concerts, plays, and other family-friendly events at an open-air amphitheater in Doko Meadows Park.
According to Buddy Price of Doko Meadows Park Foundation, a 501(c)3 committed to revitalizing Blythewood’s public park, the amphitheater is no new idea. “It was part of the original Doko Meadows Park plan, but because of cost considerations, the amphitheater, along with a couple of other things, was eliminated,” Price explained. “Our town council asked a group of us to form a nonprofit foundation to raise money to finish some of these projects, the first being the amphitheater.”
Over the last two years, Price and others involved with the Doko Meadows Park Foundation have worked tirelessly to find financial support outside tax dollars to complete the construction of the amphitheater. They received private donations from individuals and local businesses that now total over $465,000. One of the group’s biggest contributions came from Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union, who saw such potential in the project that they donated a whopping $125,000. The amphitheater is now aptly named after them.
The amphitheater will seat 2,000 people; since it is an outdoor, open-air venue, Price notes that the seating is expandable. It features professional sound and lighting systems and a concession area. Nestled in Doko Meadows Park, the amphitheater is surrounded by a beautiful pond, multiple acres of walking trails, athletic fields, and a community center. According to Price, the Doko Meadows Park Foundation has hosted a few events at the venue already “to test it out,” but this week, they’re hosting something much larger.
Doko Meadows Park Foundation will celebrate the success of their fundraising efforts this Thursday, Oct. 26, with a grand opening and dedication ceremony. Held from 6 to 10:30 p.m., Thursday’s event will feature live music on the amphitheater’s main stage from The Root Doctors, The Sensational Epics, Alex and Cat, and Michael Hall. In addition to a bar serving alcoholic drinks for adult guests, there will be nine food trucks set up so concert-goers may enjoy a variety of foods during the show. For families with children, there will be face painting, balloon art, a playground, games, and a separate stage featuring live performances from some of the youngest students of Freeway Music Academy.