Date(s) - 06/13/2015
Dave Rowley and Ryan Sather kick off the first summer concert series in the Dickinson County Nature Center outdoor amphitheater 7 p.m. Saturday, June 13.
The duo met more than a decade ago, when Rowley’s daughter was taking violin lessons at Sather’s Midwest Piano store in Spencer.
“We decided to get together for one gig, and that was 12 years ago,” Sather said, adding that he has played with Rowley for more than 200 shows since.
Rowley and Sather share vocals for their shows, and Sather pounds the keys while Rowley switches between guitar, harmonica and ukulele. They play a variety of music, from classics by the Beatles and Eagles to blues, jazz, folk and rock ‘n’ roll hits.
“It’s a mixture of adult contemporary-type of music,” Sather said. “We play songs people can relate to.”
Rowley and Sather have a successful following, and Sather thinks it’s not because they are the best musicians in the world but because they are good entertainers. Plus, they have learned how to play well as a duo.
“I think we’re both good listeners,” Sather said. “We listen to what the other musician is doing and trying to accomplish, and we adapt.”
The outdoor amphitheater at the nature center will provide the perfect setting for Rowley and Sather’s music, and although they have done outdoor concerts before it’s not a common occurrence for them, so this will be a unique experience for audiences.
“It’s fun being outside sometimes,” Sather said. “It’s beautiful.”
The concert will be the first of three outdoor shows this season at the nature center, and it will be held after the We Pedal Clean Water conservation bike ride around West Lake Okoboji scheduled for 8 a.m.-noon June 13.
Concert tickets cost $7 at the nature center entrance, with children 5 and younger free. The gate will open at 6 p.m. for the 7 p.m. show. Audience members may bring blankets or lawn chairs to sit on as well as picnic dinners, beer, wine or pop to enjoy during the show.
“We are so excited to be kicking off the new Art & Nature concert series for the summer with Dave and Ryan; they will put on an amazing show,” said Karess Knudtson, environmental education coordinator at the nature center. “I am certain that people will enjoy the laid-back atmosphere the amphitheater area provides with the wetland and prairie backdrop; it is sure to be a great event.”
Sather hopes that the audience will enjoy the music, the passion of the songwriters represented and will leave having been thoroughly entertained.
“I think people will leave feeling good,” he said. “Music is a diversion from life.”
Concerts will also be held at the nature center 7 p.m. July 11 and Sept. 4, during the Bee & Butterfly Festival.