Arts & Culture

Concerts to return to U.S. Cellular Center, McGrath Amphitheatre

Boyz II Men performs at McGrath Amphitheatre in Cedar Rapids on Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
Boyz II Men performs at McGrath Amphitheatre in Cedar Rapids on Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
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Music is returning to the U.S. Cellular Center and the McGrath Amphitheatre, with new safety protocols in place.

VenuWorks of Cedar Rapids, which manages those venues, as well as the Paramount Theatre and ImOn Ice, calls its new plan Return to Live. All four venues have been closed since late March.

A weekly Live at the 5 concert series featuring local bands will begin July 30 and continue through Sept. 24 at the Cellular Center, 370 First Ave. NE.

The lineup will include:

• Toxic Blonde, July 30

• New Trick, Aug. 6

• Catfish Murphy, Aug. 13

• Tanner Lee and the Beach Bums, Aug. 20

• The Mixtape, Aug. 27

• Tyler Richton and the High Bank Boys, Sept. 3

• Not Quite Brothers, Sept. 10

• Faux Doubt, Sept. 17

• Pianopalooza, Sept. 24.

They will perform in a new Club 5 setup, using tables to keep capacity around 400, down from the usual 2,000 Club 5 standing-room-only show. Tickets will be $5 at the door, but reservations are encouraged to accommodate table groupings.

Drink specials also will be available with reservations made at Creventslive.com.

Guests must wear face coverings when not at their table. Other health and safety measures are outlined at Creventslive.com/returntolive.

Among other safety measures include, for events that require bag checks, only clear bags measuring eight and a half inches by five inches or smaller will be permitted; food and beverage operations have been upgraded to minimize contact between staff and patrons, including glass partitions; and each venue has purchased electrostatic cleaning equipment to allow staff to sanitize public areas and seats after every event.

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“We are excited to slowly and safely bring live events back to Cedar Rapids,” Michael Silva, executive director of VenuWorks Cedar Rapids, said in a prepared statement.

At the outdoor McGrath Amphitheatre, 475 First St. SW, tickets are on sale for concerts by:

• Josh Turner, set for 8 p.m. Aug. 22

• Gary Allan at 8 p.m. Sept. 11

• Pork Tornadoes at 7 p.m. Sept. 25.

New limits are 1,339 audience members, down from a capacity of about 4,000.

When full-arena concerts return to the Cellular Center, capacity will be 1,806, down from about 6,000 for typical stage configurations. At the Paramount Theatre, limits will be set at 620, down from 1,675.

ImOn Ice numbers will depend on the kind of presentation, noted Katie Ripke, director of marketing and sales for VenuWorks of Cedar Rapids.

In Coralville, the 6,000-seat Xtream Arena, 200 E. Ninth St., is targeting its grand opening for early September, general manager Jack Ligon said, adding that an official announcement will come soon.

Comments: (319) 368-8508; diana.nollen@thegazette.com

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