Trail Mix to showcase local musicians Saturday, rain or shine


Local musicians will bathe the woods in sound on Saturday, rain or shine.

The first of what organizers hope will become an annual concert event, Trail Mix, will begin at noon in the west pavilion at Izaak Walton Preserve, directly across the parking lot from Senior Hall, and will run until 7 p.m.

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The event is being co-sponsored by the Theatre Arts Leadership Kouncil, an arts and leadership organization for teens, and Trails for Illinois, a nonprofit organization that advocates for recreational trail development. 

Suggested donations are $3 for students under 18 years old, $5 for individuals and $10 for families of up to four people. Concessions will be available, including a trail mix bar. 

Proceeds will benefit the two sponsoring organizations.

Steve Ploum, adult mentor for TALK; Steve Buchtel, executive director of Trails for Illinois; and Jeff Maharry, a local musician, dreamed up the idea for the concert, conceived as a successor to a series of concerts, Music Fest, that Ploum produced locally a few years ago.

"It's an attempt to kind of regenerate the vibe," Ploum said. "It will be very picnic-friendly. It'll be a cool, fun afternoon and evening."

Between 10 and 12 musical acts will perform, including four teen acts plus a few spoken word performers.
"It's basically acoustic and semi-acoustic," Ploum said. "We can be a little flexible with it."

Among the performers will be Ploum's band, Toad Shake, and Just Aggie, which features Aggie Cobain on ukelele. Other voices familiar to local music lovers will be heard, including Jim Joyce and Jim Ruse.

Ploum said the idea started with a donation.

"We got a donation for outdoor sound equipment," he said. "We said, 'OK, we need to do something with this.'"

As with previous events sponsored by TALK, Trail Mix will give local teens a chance to showcase their talents and grow as performers, according to Ploum.

He said TALK members have been involved in planning the event from the beginning, including coming up with the Trail Mix name.

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