Summer is here, and with it the beginning of Old Falls Street's free weekly programming for local and regional guests. In addition to daily backyard board games featured on the middle block, Old Falls Street is bringing back the "TGI Fridays on Old Falls Street" concert series, presented Friday evenings beginning June 26; a new series of weekly free family fun activities on Saturday afternoons beginning June 27; and the ever-popular Thursday evening "Flicks on Old Falls" free family movie series beginning July 2.
"Over the past few seasons, Old Falls Street has established itself as the Niagara Falls 'Community Welcome Center,' featuring world-class programming for our residents, regional and out-of-town guests," said Jason Murgia, Old Falls Street's general manager. "Our team has partnered with many local and regional organizations, entertainers and performers to present free family programming."
Kicking off the free weekly summer programming is the "TGI Fridays on Old Falls Street" concerts, beginning Friday, June 26, with WidowMaker. The weekly series is from 7 to 10 p.m. through Sept. 4 on the Conference Center block, closest to series sponsor TGI Fridays (located inside the Sheraton At The Falls hotel).
The street concerts feature the area's most popular classic rock and dance bands, local merchandise vendors, food and beer concessions. Guests are encouraged to stay until 10 p.m., when fireworks are launched over Niagara Falls are clearly visible on Old Falls Street.
The "TGI Fridays on Old Falls Free Street" concert schedule is as follows:
For more information on performers, visit the Old Falls Street USA Facebook page and subscribe to the event listings.
New this summer is Old Falls Street's free family fun activities, beginning Saturday, June 27, and continuing through Sept. 5 on the middle block. These weekly family activites are presented free of charge and feature continuous programming from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each week, with extended hours on specific weekends.
"We are proud to partner with many local and regional organizations to present our free family fun each Saturday afternoon," said Katie Kielaszek, Old Falls Street's director of events. "There will be something new each week, including cooking demonstations, children's performers, special events, live performances, local merchandise vendors and more."
Two local organizations that will be on hand each Saturday are the Friends of the Niagara Falls Public Library group, which will feature a book sale for adults and children, as well as the F-Bites culinary youth vocation program. F-Bites is facilitated by chef Bobby Anderson, a Niagara Falls native who competed on the television show "Hell's Kitchen" with chef Gordon Ramsay.
From 11 a.m. to noon each Saturday, Anderson will lead a student culinary team in preparing a gourmet meal, while integrating various front- and back-of-house restaurant techniques, leadership skills and interactive fun. Guests will be treated to samples of the meal prepared on-site, served by the participants.
In addition, Old Falls Street will feature is free backyard board games, including foosball, table tennis, shuffleboard, hopscotch, large-scale Jenga, chess and checkers during this time.
A new activity is "Imagination Playground," an innovative play system for children that encourages the importance of creative free play to help them grow up happy and healthy.
Other free family fun scheduled activities are as follows:
Saturday, June 27
Saturday, July 4
Saturday, July 11
Saturday, July 18
Saturday, July 25
Saturday, Aug. 1
Saturday, Aug. 8
Saturday, Aug. 15
Saturday, Aug. 22
Saturday, Aug. 29
Saturday, Sept. 5
Additional free family fun programming will be added throughout the summer. For more information, visit the Old Falls Street USA Facebook page and subscribe to the event listings.
Returning this year is the ever-popular "Flicks on Old Falls" free outdoor movie series. This growing event will be hosted at 9 p.m. Thursdays, from July 2 through Aug. 27, on Old Falls Street's middle block (weather permitting).
As presenting sponsor of "Flicks on Old Falls," BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York will offer the "Healthy Zone Cruiser" as part of the free family entertainment prior to each Thursday evening flick. The "Healthy Zone Cruiser" is a van filled with fun, healthy activities such as hula-hoops, beanbag toss, Kan Jam, yoga balls, soccer balls, sidewalk chalk, jump ropes and fun giveaways.
"We are so pleased to partner with Old Falls Street for this great summer activity," said Julie R. Snyder, director of corporate relations, BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York. "We can't wait to bring the 'Healthy Zone Cruiser' to Old Falls Street on Thursday evenings for pre-movie fun."
In addition, Old Falls Street is partnering with Western New York Young Audiences and D&B Karaoke and DJ to present additional family programming prior to each film, beginning at 8 p.m. The Friends of the Niagara Falls Public Library group also will host a used children's book sale each week.
The Thursday evening "Flicks on Old Falls" free outdoor movie series schedule is as follows:
Additional free Saturday evening "Flicks on Old Falls" movies include:
Old Falls Street also is presenting two free Saturday "Date Night" "Flicks on Old Falls" movies on July 11 and Aug. 1. "Date Night" movies are planned to appeal to an older audience. Beer and wine vending will be available on these evenings.
Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets for all "Flicks on Old Falls" movies. Food concessions will be available for purchase. For more information on performers, visit www.FallsStreet.com or the Old Falls Street USA Facebook page.