Rockin’ The River returns to Wilkes-Barre

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WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Electrifying sounds of rock and roll music filled the night in downtown Wilkes-Barre. Rockin’ the River’ returned Friday night along the banks of the Susquehanna after a year of silence due to the pandemic.

Stage lights shimmered on the Susquehanna River, as thousands gathered at millennium Circle for Rockin’ the River. It’s the first time since 2019 people were able to come out and enjoy live music like Elton John and Bruce Springsteen tribute bands.

“Very excited to get out in the outdoors without the mask, and without the germies and all those other things, nice to be here with good people that want to have a good time,” Edith Jones of Forty Fort said.

Because of the pandemic, a scaled-back version of the show hit the road last summer with local talent. But this season, the outdoor concerts are back home along the banks of the river.

It’s an event that has something for everyone, including plenty of good food. All you need to bring is something to sit on and maybe an umbrella. And the best part of all for some, the entertainment is free.

“Without this being a free concert, like the kids can come, they can enjoy it as well, versus like they said, if it was at a bar, then we’d have to find a babysitter for the kids, and then we’re indoors,” Krista Moss of Shickshinny said.

The rain didn’t stop guests from rocking into the night.

“I’m looking at everybody, they’re smiling, no masks on, enjoying the food, enjoying the music, enjoying each other. This is just a wonderful event, and we’re looking forward to next week, and the week after,” Wilkes-Barre Mayor George Brown said.

Next Friday, the Tom Petty Appreciation Band and Dupont musician Bret Alexander are scheduled to take the stage along North River Street. Food trucks open at 5 p.m., and the music starts at 6.

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