Fridays at the Fort offer access to the arts


Arts for Lawrence’s artistic initiatives are breathing life and creativity into the City of Lawrence.

The second-to-last Fridays at the Fort Concert Series were presented Aug 11 at the Arts for Lawrence Fort Ben Cultural Campus Amphitheater, 8920 Otis Ave., in Lawrence. The event is one of Arts for Lawrence’s programs making the arts accessible to everyone.

Arts For Lawrence Executive Director Elana Thompson said the free and public event creates more inclusive opportunities within the community.

“It’s to make arts more available to everyone,” Thompson said. “For people who may not be able to afford to go downtown to see the symphony or to see events. It’s right here in our own backyard.”

The series also gives additional opportunities to those who are interested in dance and playing music, said Thompson. The Aug. 11 event featured the Indianapolis-based dance company, Crossroads Dance Indy, and the Indianapolis Jazz Orchestra.

Lawrence residents David Ward and Chunia Graves said they enjoy Lawrence because events are always being organized for the community.

Ward said he loved the Juneteenth celebration that Arts for Lawrence presented in June, for example.

“I was surprised we even had a Juneteenth thing,” Ward said. “There were way more people than I imagined that showed up.”

Graves said Arts for Lawrence programs have shown diversity, celebrating different backgrounds, such as Latin and Hispanic cultures.

“That’s going to attract so many more people than just those that are from Lawrence,” Graves said.

The last event of the Fridays at the Fort concert series is scheduled for 6 p.m. Aug 25 at the Fort Ben Cultural Campus Amphitheater, featuring Pork & Beans Brass Band.

Thompson said the event is free to attend and is supported through donations. For more, visit