After a year's worth of construction, the Cedar Cultural Center is set to open its new plaza space this Saturday.
A proposal to update the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood venue's outdoor plaza has been in the works since the spring of 2014. The 27-year-old Cedar brought a funding pitch to the City for a mixed-use space that would allow the venue to host ticketed al fresco concerts with the use of temporary fencing, as well as free shows and community events. According to Cedar Director of Marketing, Michael Rossetto, construction began on the roughly 5,000-square-foot plaza during the spring of 2015.
The Cedar is hosting a grand opening party on the plaza this Saturday, starting at 5 p.m., and the event's eclectic lineup reflects the neighborhood's global influences.
Singer Dalmar Yare will lead a demonstration of traditional Somali Daanto dance by the Somali Museum Dance Troupe, the youth of Teen Voice will perform spoken word, with headlining performances from electrified latin outfit Alma Andina and Toronto-based Somali singer Jubba, who has been one of the Cedar's artists in residence for the month of April.
Neighborhood restaurants will provide food, while Triple C, a new youth-designed and staffed coffee stand partnering with the nearby Brian Coyle center, will make its neighborhood debut.
Established in 1989, the Cedar's space housed a movie theater when it was built in 1948.