Free event celebrates George R. Brown’s 30th anniversary and new season of Party on the Plaza

HOUSTON (August 15, 2017) - The George R. Brown Convention Center is celebrating its 30th anniversary with the “Retro Spectacular” event at Plaza at Avenida Houston, across from Discovery Green, September 23, 2017 from 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. The free event will be throwing it back to the 1980s with vintage car displays, airbrush t-shirt stations, arcade games, a screening of hit film Back to the Future at Discovery Green, a live performance of classic hits by Texas-based SKYROCKET!, and a fireworks finale to culminate the evening.

The “Retro Spectacular” also kicks off a new season of Houston’s legendary event “Party on the Plaza,” which will return to Avenida Houston Wednesdays this fall from 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. The free concert series will feature local and regional performers, as well as food and local brew offerings.

Concert lineup includes:

October 4: Robert Ellis with The Texas Gentlemen  
Houston-native Robert Ellis is a singer, songwriter and guitarist known for blending classic country and bluegrass with melodies of pop and modern jazz. Ellis recently released the self-titled album, Robert Ellis, in 2016.  The Texas Gentlemen is a North Texas roots-rock collective that will release their debut record TX Jelly on September 15, 2017.

October 18: Ben Kweller with Wild Child
Austin-native Ben Kweller is a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Kweller debuted on the music scene in 1997 at just 14 years-old and has since released five solo studio albums. Wild Child, Austin-based indie pop band, that features a mix of folk, pop and gypsy melodies. The band released their third album, Fools, in 2015.

October 25: Bob Schneider with The Tontons  
Austin-based singer-songwriter, Bob Schneider, has been a recording artist for the past 25 years as a solo artist and member of popular bands, The Ugly Americans and The Scabs. Over the course of his career, Schneider has collaborated on 30 studio albums. The Tontons are a Houston-based indie rock quartet, known for their combination of rock, soul, pop, jazz and retro flourishes.

November 1: The Molly Ringwalds with ROXY ROCA
Hailing from Sheffield, England, The Molly Ringwalds are a legendary quintet known for creating an 80s experience by showcasing all of the musical genres of the decade. ROXY ROCA are a Texas-infused, powerhouse-southern soul and funk sounds. The Austin-based band offers hooky guitar riffs, funky backbeats, slammin’ horn lines, and lyrics of love, heartache, and message of choosing happiness above all else sung with conviction and serenity.

November 8: The Old 97s with Seratones
The Old 97s are an American alternative country band from Dallas, recognized as one of the pioneering bands of the alternative-country movement in the mid-to-late 1990s. Formed in 1993, the band has released 11 studio albums, including their most recent release Graveyard Whistling. Shreveport natives, The Seratones serve up a combination of Southern musicality with garage rock ferocity. Fronted with powerful vocals, each song is played with grit, energy and rawness of punk, soul, and occasionally jazz and swing.

November 15: Reverend Horton Heat with Jesse Dayton
Reverend Horton Heat is a Texas-based psychobilly band, as well as the stage name of frontman, Jim Heath. The band mixes country, surf, punk, big band, swing and rockabilly into loud, energetic songs featuring humorous lyrics. Jesse Dayton is an Austin-based musician that offers guitar shredding, country-infused, Americana sound.

In addition to “Party on the Plaza,” Avenida Houston will also host “Circo Avenida” and “Blues and More on the Brown” this fall. “Circo Avenida” will feature live acrobatic performances by Cirque la Vie every Friday evening, beginning September 1 through November 24, from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. “Blues and More on the Brown” will offer downtown employees a lively lunch hour featuring live performances by local musicians every Thursday, beginning October 5 through November 16, from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Avenida Houston encompasses a 97,000-square-foot pedestrian plaza that runs the five blocks in front of the George R. Brown Convention Center and its surrounding areas: Discovery Green, Marriott Marquis, Partnership Tower and Avenida North Parking Garage, Hilton Americas-Houston and five restaurants. It expands the cultural landscape of downtown through the addition of many new works of public art. Two monumental sculptural works, Soaring in the Clouds by Ed Wilson and Wings Over Water in the Fountain of Americas by Joe O'Connell and Creative Machines, welcome visitors to Avenida Houston. Within the landscaped plaza is the Wharf, an intimate special event space. The $175 million transformation of the area began in 2013 and was completed in January 2017.

For more information on Party on the Plaza, including parking, visit www.AvenidaHouston.com/party. For more information on Retro Spectacular, visit www.avenidahouston.com/retro.

ABOUT HOUSTON FIRST
Houston First Corporation operates the city's finest convention and arts facilities to position Houston as a world-class destination. In 2014, Houston First and the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau aligned their operations to create a single clear voice representing the city under the brand Visit Houston. Houston First owns the Hilton Americas-Houston hotel and manages more than 11 city-owned buildings, plazas and parking facilities. For more information, visit HoustonFirst.com and VisitHouston.com.

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Media Contacts
Houston First
Leah Shah, lshah@visithouston.com, 713.853.8313

Dancie Perugini Ware Public Relations
Laura Jones, ljones@dpwpr.com, 713.224.9115