Concert for a cause: Music fest in Salado to benefit all-abilities playground project

Concert for a cause: Music fest in Salado to benefit all-abilities playground project

Brandon Rhyder will perform at the Lonestar Legends Music Fest on Friday, April 13, at Johnny’s Steaks and Bar-Be-Que in Salado.

The inaugural Lonestar Legends Music Fest promises to offer everything to make a wonderful evening: dancing under the stars, live country music and … mermaids.

The event will take place 4-11 p.m. Friday, April 13, at Johnny’s Steaks and Bar-Be-Que, 301 Thomas Arnold Road in Salado. Lonestar Legends is presented by Sirena Fest, and will offer all things mermaid, along with food trucks, kids activities, and live music from local bands, including singer/songwriter Brandon Rhyder. Proceeds from the event will be used to help build an all-abilities playground in Salado.

Tiffany Schreiner Humphrey, Sirena Fest Founder and creative director of events, said Lonestar Legends will offer a taste of what happens during the Sirena Fest and Mermaid Parade held in October.

“Sirena Fest proper is held the first Saturday of every October,” she said. “This will be our second one coming up October 6. We had about 3,000 people attend the last Sirena Fest, so obviously we’re really thrilled with that turnout.”

Schreiner Humphrey said Lonestar Legends will give everyone a taste of the “merfolk world of Sirena Fest” with mermaid-themed vendors, crafts and games. She said the beginning of the event will feature stilt walkers from Circus Picnic out of Austin. She said the stilt walkers can only be there for a short time, so anyone who wants to see them or take a photo with them should arrive early.

The festivities will also include plenty of live music. Amber Preston Dankert, LoneStar Legends chairwoman, said the lineup will feature Martian Folk from 5-6 p.m., the Scruggs Band from 6-8 p.m. and Brandon Rhyder from 8-10 p.m.

Preston Dankert said they were interested in finding a headliner who was local and also has a passion for helping kids. She said when they asked Rhyder to perform, he responded immediately.

“And he’s really excited to be playing the event,” she said. “So we’re really blessed to have had him say ‘yes,’ because he’s fantastic. He’s really an awesome person to work with. I mean, he’s not only a singer, but he’s got a huge heart for the kids of Central Texas.”

Preston Dankert said every band performing at the festival plays a different genre of music.

“So no matter what kind of music people like, I think they’re going to come out and have a blast,” she said.

Lonestar Legends is free to children 18 and younger. Tickets cost $20 for adults and provide admission to the festival and concerts.

“Sirena Fest’s primary aim is to raise awareness for children in general, for children’s needs across Central Texas, and our primary beneficiary is currently an all-abilities playground for all of Central Texas that will be based in Salado,” Schreiner Humphrey said.

She said the exact location of the playground could be disclosed as soon as the documents are signed. She said it will be centrally located, highly visible and easily accessible. She said she hopes to have the playground open in two years, depending on the amount of support it receives.

Schreiner Humphrey said Sirena Fest is working closely with the group that developed the Play for All Park in Round Rock.

“So they’ve already done this sort of thing,” she said. “We’ll be doing it on a somewhat smaller scale, so that it’s more suitable for Salado and that it ties in to the iconic themes of Bell County.”

Sirena Fest is a Variety Texas 501(c)3 children’s charity. For more information about Sirena Fest or to purchase tickets for Lonestar Legends, visit

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