Ames on the Half Shell in full swing

The Ames Jaycees’ annual Ames on the Half Shell concert series is back in full swing for the summer.

The event, which has taken place at the Durham Bandshell in Bandshell Park since 2003, occurs every Friday in June. The event features different food trucks and musical acts every week.

The shows begin at 5 p.m. and often feature a community partner that speaks at the beginning of each show. Community partners have been integrated into the show for the past four years. Oftentimes the partner will request donations toward various causes or events.

This week’s event will feature food from the food trucks of Carlos Quesadillas and the Traveling Pig Food Truck. 

This week’s concert will employ the music of Jake Doty and Hawk McIntyre. The two artists will be performing alternative rock music. R&B, rock, folk and everything in between is covered during the five-week concert series.

“Most of the musicians we bring in are Iowa natives,” Erin Greazel, internal relations vice president for the Ames Jaycees. “Last week we had the Vinyl Vagabonds and we’ll be having Burning Sensations soon as well.”

The June 14 show is also Family Night, with the Bethesda Lutheran Church providing a bounce house and face painting activities for children who attend the event.

Admission for the event is $5, with part of the proceeds going toward community development projects that the Ames Jaycees assist.

“We held an Easter egg hunt at North Grand Mall this November,” Greazel said. “We also did a program last year around Thanksgiving that allowed us to gift a meal to needy families. We’re hoping to be able to do that again sometime this year around August or September.”

In addition to free meals and Easter egg hunts, proceeds from Ames on the Half Shell have previous helped supplement a youth scholar program, as well as provide scholarships to Iowa high school students. The group also works with Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership.

The Ames Jaycees have been an organization for 91 years and is part of the non-profit corporation United States Junior Chamber.

The Ames Jaycees consists of 20 members and participates in various service events, fundraisers and community activities during the year, Greazel said. The goal of the Ames Jaycees, and the Jaycee corporation as a whole, is to provide leadership opportunities and improve community outreach.

Following this week’s show, the June 21 show will feature music from Burning Sensations. The last show of the concert series will take place on June 28 and will include a performance from Saucy Jack.