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The Crooked Road Music Series to feature Blacksburg Market Square Jam

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Blacksburg Market Square JamHeartwood, VA -- Blacksburg is well-known as a college town, but it is also the location of one of the most vibrant old time and bluegrass music scenes in The Crooked Road region. This is thanks in part to their Market Square Jam, which creates a bustling scene for traditional music lovers and folks who just like a lively downtown atmosphere. At 7:00 pm on Thursday, March 28, 2013, the Blacksburg Market Square Jam from Montgomery County will be the featured Venue Showcase at Heartwood. Admission is free but donations will be accepted for the series performances.

The Market Square Jam began in 2011, not long after the Town rebuilt our Farmers Market and created a wonderful gathering space called Market Square Park. Their goal from the beginning was to engage the Old Time music community in Blacksburg and the surrounding region and to host a weekly Jam in the market and they are thrilled to now be a part of the Crooked Road region. “When the Jam first began, we had also just launched a program called Sidewalk Stage which encouraged artists to perform or create their work in outdoor spaces throughout the downtown much like a busking program but with very few limitations. These two programs complemented each other very well and have demonstrated the Town’s commitment to the arts and cultural heritage.”

In 2012, the Town solicited the sponsorship of two local non-profit organizations (The Blacksburg Partnership and the Blacksburg Museum and Cultural Foundation) to help fund the program. This sponsorship allowed them not only to increase their marketing of the Market Square Jam, but to pay a host band a nominal fee to lead the Jam each week. This small change to the program was very well received among the musicians, and it guaranteed that there would always be a playing presence in the market on Wednesday evenings in the summer. Last year, each jam brought out anywhere from 20-40 musicians each evening, as well as an engaged audience out for a fun evening in the park. Going into our third year, they are fortunate enough to have the same sponsors on board, and a great group of hosts making each Jam a success.

Blacksburg’s Market Square Jam is a weekly jam session that takes place in the warmer months on Wednesday evenings from 8-11 pm at the site of the Farmers Market on the corner of Draper Road and Roanoke Street. The Jam, catering to traditional old time and bluegrass music, brings musicians together to pick a tune, enjoy some fun times with their friends and family, and take in all that downtown Blacksburg has to offer.

The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail (TCR) music series at Heartwood in Abingdon showcases communities of the region through their traditional music venues and their youth music.

The Crooked Road’s mission is to support tourism and economic development in Southwest Virginia by celebrating and preserving this Appalachian region's unique musical and cultural heritage. The 19 counties, 4 cities, and over 50 towns and communities in Southwest Virginia that make up The Crooked Road region represent one of the richest sources of traditional heritage music in the world.

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