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‘Sweet’ band, great times on tap at inaugural Eagle Fest concert

Spalding's biggest Welcome Week event of 2021 is set for Saturday with a free Trager Park show by funk/soul/R&B group Joslyn and the Sweet Compression

Steve Jones

The first week of classes is over, and it’s time to celebrate. Spalding University’s inaugural Eagle Fest concert has you covered.

Eagle Fest – Spalding’s biggest Welcome Week event of Fall 2021 – will take place 6-10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 28 at Trager Park (at the corner of South Second and West Kentucky streets) and is a free event for all Spalding students, employees, alumni and their families.

Joslyn and the Sweet Compression – a high-energy, dance-inducing funk, soul and R&B band from Lexington – will be performing, and food trucks and vendors and campus organizations will be on hand. Free T-shirts will be distributed to early arrivers. Joslyn and the Sweet Compression will go on about 7 p.m. DJ Alli will also perform, closing out the evening.

Eagle Fest is the first and biggest 2021 event organized by a new committee of campus leaders focused on strengthening campus traditions and community engagement.

“We love the community we’ve built at Spalding, and we are constantly looking for ways to strengthen that sense of campus pride and build energy and excitement around activities on campus,” said Amanda Lucas, Spalding’s Senior Director of Marketing. “Now that we are all fully back on campus after being away from one another for so long during the pandemic, we thought a big, high-energy, outdoor concert would be a perfect tradition to establish to celebrate the new school year. Because it’s outside in a huge open space, it’s also a safe way for us to gather and have a great time.”

Lucas said Spalding couldn’t have landed a better headliner for their inaugural concert than Joslyn and the Sweet Compression, led by dynamic singer Joslyn Hampton and guitarist/songwriter Marty Charters, Hampton’s stepfather who has shared the stage with Buddy Guy, Van Morrison and other legends. The seven-member band, which includes two horn players, “deliver(s) a hook-filled mix of funk and soul,” according to their website. (Watch a video of the band here or at end of this story.)

Lucas, a musician, herself, said her band, Bridge 19, shared the bill with Josslyn and the Sweet Compression at a music festival and that she instantly became a fan.

“They have really blown up, playing a lot of great festivals and events in Kentucky and other states, and they are just super-fun to see live,” Lucas said. “We are really excited to have them at our first Eagle Fest, and I know our students and campus community are going to love them and have a great time.”

Before you head to Eagle Fest, please review these FAQs and important safety information:

SPALDING UNIVERSITY EAGLE FEST
When: 6-10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 28, 2021
Where: Trager Park (corner of South Second and West Kentucky streets)
Who: Joslyn and the Sweet Compression, and DJ Alli will perform. The Student Involvement Fair will be held on site.

How much are tickets?
Sponsored by Spalding’s Campus Traditions Committee, Eagle Fest is a free, ticketless event open all Spalding students, faculty, staff, alumni and their families.

Where can I park?
Campus parking and street parking – for which there is much around Trager Park – will be available. Check out our campus map for campus parking locations.

What time can I get there?
The lawn opens at 5:30 p.m. Arrive early for a free T-shirt.

What time is Eagle Fest over?
The event will end around 10 p.m.

Can I bring my kids?
For sure, Eagle Fest is a family-friendly event, and kids will love the band.

Can I bring lawn chairs?
Yes, we encourage you to bring a lawn chair or blanket.

Can I bring a canopy?
Yes, but if you plan to bring a canopy, please set it up along the perimeter of Trager Park to avoid blocking anyone’s view of the stage.

Will there be food and/or drinks on sale at Eagle Fest?
Bourbon Trail Bites Food Truck will be on site, along with Louisville Pure Tap’s free self-serve water coolers.

Can I bring my own food?
Sure thing.

What can’t I bring?
Alcohol and glass. Additionally, please do not bring items listed in the Spalding University student handbook.

COVID-19 SAFETY

An inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public space where people are gathered, even at an event that is fully outdoors. All guests who enter our event space must behave responsibly to prevent the spread of COVID.

We are closely monitoring government policy changes, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines, government mandates, and public health announcements and any guidance provided will be strictly followed.

Masks: While outdoors at Eagle Fest, wearing a mask is optional for those fully vaccinated.  We encourage everyone to mask up, especially in crowded, high-traffic areas.  Note: masks will be required for access to restrooms.

Keep your distance: Be courteous to other Eagle Fest goers and make sure to give them space — on your way in, in the food line, on the lawn, wherever.   Attendees from different households should stay at least 6 feet apart.

How are you feeling? If you’re not feeling well, please STAY HOME. We cannot emphasize this enough. Help keep each other healthy.