Clematis By Night is turning 18 this week, and in the tried and true tradition of 18th birthdays, there’s gonna be a huge party. It’s just not going to be this week because of worries about torrential downpours on Thursday.
For its big birthday, now scheduled for July 18, CBN is hosting Man In The Mirror, billed as the Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute, as well as ’80s/New Wave band Red Skies. There will be moon walk lessons and even a giant mood balloon sculpture.
But there will still be a CBN this week, just like every Thursday night.
The event was born in 1994.
“It started out with an 8-foot platform,” recalls Mary Pinak, special events coordinator of the City of West Palm Beach, and the godmother of CBN, the free weekly Thursday night music, food and fun fest. “The bands brought their own sound system, and we had some food vendors, plus a keg of beer and a bucket of soda,”
Pinak says next week’s ’80s blast from the past is a lead-up to the 25th anniversary of Fourth of Flagler, the city’s annual free patriotic party.
West Palm Beach sure likes free parties a lot.
“We do 140-plus free events a year. Free is a big part of the word ‘community,’” Pinak says.
Over the years, the community’s been treated to a variety of musical acts, both local and very, very national, especially under the organization of former coordinator and still ardent CBN fan Mat Forrest, “who really set the tone.”
The big acts include “The Voice” winner and Wellington native Cassadee Pope, “Unwritten” singer Natasha Bedingfield at the cusp of her success, Fastball, and Lifehouse.
Pinak promises that the 20th birthday party is going to be even more elaborate, in which “we will blow it out.”
No word on what the balloons will be shaped like on that one.
IF YOU GO
Clematis By Night, 6-9 p.m. today, Centennial Square, downtown West Palm Beach. Free.