Excited for BBQ n Blues and Jazz n the Street? Here’s what you need to know

Both events will feature many live musical acts and great food

Fans of live music and fresh food need look no further than First Street in La Salle as the La Salle Business Association hosts two family-friendly events as the 7th annual BBQ n Blues and 15th annual Jazz’n the Street festivities return Friday and Saturday.

The BBQ n Blues event will feature a rib cook-off, with check-in beginning at 7 a.m. Friday. Contestants have until 6 p.m. to turn in their work as judging will then begin shortly after the deadline. The award-winning ribs will be announced at 8 p.m.

Friday’s event also will feature a variety of live musical acts beginning with Ivy Ford at 4:30 p.m. Ford’s gift connects those who listen and those around her.

After Ford finishes, veteran bluesman Steve Cerqua & Crossroads begins about 6 p.m. Ghost Town Blues will take the stage at 6:30 p.m. in downtown La Salle before Cerqua takes over again.

Ghost Town Blues is a Maple Blues and Tennessee Music Award-winning band that describes itself as having a shoot-from-the-hip Memphis attitude and an explosion of modern blues vision.

The final performance of the evening will take place at 8:30 p.m. as award-winning, high-energy seven piece blues band The Jimmys makes an appearance in La Salle.

On Saturday night, La Salle will host the annual Jazz’n the Street event that is set to kick off around 3:45 p.m. with an honor guard.

The music and food-filled event will feature a performance by the IVCC Jazz Ensemble at 4 p.m., followed by a performance from musical act Ben and Kate.

Chicago-based band The Flat Cats will take the stage at 6 p.m. to play a range of vintage and modern music rooted in the hottest swinging jazz and blues, contemporary classics and timeless standards.

Ben and Kate will follow The Flat Cats as they prepare the crowd for a performance from RICO.

RICO defines itself as a band with diversified musical cultures and a mix of melodic genres and ethnicities coming together, influenced by the sound and spirit of Santana. RICO will close out weekend activities beneath a 10 p.m. firework show presented by the City of La Salle.

Both events will offer food vendors and a beer garden from local businesses such as Haze Smokehouse, The Doghouse, 9th Street Pub, Lil Mad Cafe Gourmet, La Salle VFW and Lil Bella’s. A 50/50 raffle is also available with tickets offered through the City of La Salle.

Jayce Eustice

Covering local government, breaking news and whatever is thrown at me for the La Salle News Tribune