Country act Washboard Union set to shine at Queens Place Emera Centre

by Karen Janigan

The Washboard Union is the big ticket event scheduled for the the Queens Place Emera Centre (QPEC), Friday, June 15.

The Region of Queens Municipality announced the concert at a news conference at Queens Place Emera Centre on January 24.

"The Washboard Union is one of the most talked about bands in Canadian county music right now, and we are delighted that they will be performing at Queens Place Emera Centre," said David Dagley, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality, in a news release.

The multiple award-winning British Columbia band has been described as country with a "lick of bluegrass" and has won CCMA's Roots Recording of the Year in 2016 and 2017.

The Washboard Union amassed nine awards in 2017, including a CCMA for Roots Group of the Year (an award they also received in 2016) as well as a record seven British Columbia Country Music Association Awards (BCCMA).

Since their song Shot of Glory attained gold record status in sales in September, 2017, the Washboard Union has seen their single Shine reach the top 10 on the Canadian Country Music charts, as their third top 10 hit, and their fourth song to chart in the top 20.

They have shared the stage with such well known country acts as Keith Urban, Reba McEntire, the Zac Brown Band, and recently with Old Dominion.

Tickets for the show went on sale immediately at the centre attracting a queue of about 12 people.

Newfoundland's Jason Benoit will open for the band,.

The show will also feature Queens County's own Autumn Rae Carver – a 14-year-old from Middlefield – who will open for Benoit; she opened for Terri Clark at the South Shore Ex after winning South Shore Idol.

"I am so excited to be performing at this concert," said Carver told LighthouseNOW at the announcement.

Dagley said he's thrilled with the calibre of the acts Queens Place attracts. "We've been doing very well with our concerts. We have a great facility... that musicians like to play and the acoustics are excellent."

The region's bottom line is also doing well.

"In our budgeting we are going for a break-even point. This facility gives a reason for people to visit Queens, stay in our hotels, eat at our restaurants and visit our shops. For the Beach Boys' concert there was a 60 per cent uptake from residents outside of Queens; so that's a great benefit," Dagley noted.

"While we do budget for a break-even point, we have a surplus for the past four or five years, so we've been doing very well financially on this," he said in an interview following the announcement.

While the Beach Boys concert in 2016 sold out the next three came close to break even status.

The tickets for the June 15 concert will be $45 or $55 and are available at the QPEC and through Ticketpro.

The concert will also feature a new seating plan with theatre style seats with beverage service on the floor that will be only open to those who are 19 years or older. All ages seating is provided in the upper bowl.

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