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An upbeat website for a downtown school

the Southerner Online

An upbeat website for a downtown school

the Southerner Online

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Twin Oaks Summer Concert Series connects community

Diana Jachman
Members of the band, “The Squirrelheads” rock out at the first concert of the 2023 season.

Nestled in the backyards of Inman Park residents stands a stage that holds the ‘Twin Oaks Summer Concert Series’.

Since 2020, the ‘Twin Oaks Summer Concert Series’ has been held one Saturday a month during the summer and is located at the houses on Sinclair, Colquitt and Seminole Avenue. Co-Founder of the series, Karen Green, started the series to reconnect with friends and neighbors.

“During Covid we put our heads together and decided it would be cool if we utilized the park space that we have behind our houses,” Green said. “We thought it would be pretty neat to invite our neighbors and friends to come for an evening of music.”

Co-Founder Jeff Raw explained the other reason for founding the donation-based series: bringing live music back to the neighborhood amidst a pandemic.

“We wanted to figure out a way to allow singers, songwriters and professional musicians to play in a friendly, open environment where they could have open space and not be inside and be able to generate revenue,” Raw said. “It was mainly for us to give back to the musicians and provide them a space to make a living.” 

The idea to begin this series stemmed from a group of neighbors seeking out the empty acre of land behind their houses 20 years earlier, with the desire to turn it into a park.

“About 20-25 years ago, ten families got together, and the lady who owned the plot of land was moving out of the neighborhood, her house also backed up onto the lot. It was a vacant lot and it was land locked, meaning it’s accessible only through an alleyway,” Green said. “One of our neighbors approached her and asked if she’d be interested in selling that space. And she was; she loved the idea of turning it into a park and so that’s what we did.” 

With a desire to reconnect the neighborhood during lockdown, Green and Raw approached their neighbors about finding another use for the space.

“I would say that I am very lucky and grateful to have really cool neighbors,” Raw said. “In the past they have had little pickup sessions with musicians, so I’ve got very open-minded, forward thinking, cool neighbors that love live music as well. They loved the idea and have really gravitated towards it.”

Other residents of Inman Park and surrounding areas also attend the event. Judi Jacobs is not only a resident of Inman Park, but a frequent attendee of the concerts and has enjoyed the series since its establishment. 

“I heard about it because I know the people that own the property and long before they started doing a summer concert series, I went to many bonfires back there, and this was in the 90s or early 2000s,” Jacobs said. “But I heard about the concert series because I know people on the street and I know the owners.” 

Jacobs has been driven to the concerts by its atmosphere, its connection of people, and the opportunity to listen to music for free.

“The first year that they did it was during Covid; it was after lockdown, but it was when we still didn’t feel comfortable going out and it was a way to be with the neighbors and be outside,” Jacobs said. “I like that it is right in the neighborhood and that there’s kids running around and dogs running around. But what I really like is that you just grab your chairs and your cocktails and you’re outside where they built that cool little stage and it makes you feel one with your community.”

Raw explained how the concert series is not only unique because of the close knit community and non-traditional environment it takes place in, but also the fact that the series is completely volunteer driven for the benefit of the musicians.

“I would say that it is 100% volunteer run and organized and is here to benefit the musicians,” Raw said. “People like to come to it because of the atmosphere and the environment. It’s fresh air, laid back, casual and a great place to see music.”

In the future of Twin Oaks Summer Concert Series, Green hopes for growth in the number of attendees as well as a wider variety of musicians.

“We’re going to keep doing it,” Green said. “We’re going to keep doing it and hopefully continue to spread the word and invite people who love music and want to support the musicians.”

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About the Contributor
Diana Jachman, Multimedia Managing Editor
Diana Jachman is a senior, and this is her thrid year writing for The Southerner. She currently writes and produces video productions for the website. Outside of The Southerner, Diana is involved with Midtown's Theater program. She is so excited to continue working on the paper this year.

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