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County OKs musical event

Profile image for By Bj Lewis / Staff Writer
By Bj Lewis / Staff Writer

Family-friendly acts to complement 35 Denton festival, official says

Denton County Commissioners Court gave its approval for an all-ages music event to take place during the three days of the upcoming 35 Denton festival.

Denton Radio on the Square will be sponsored by the Office of History and Culture, Denton Historical Commission, Denton Convention and Visitors Bureau and

The event is designed to spotlight the Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum, give families a music-centric event to attend together and showcase local artists. Commissioners unanimously voted to allow the event to use the lawn at Tuesday’s meeting.

“We’re not looking at being a competition to 35 Denton, but a complement,” said Kim Phillips, vice president of the Denton Convention and Visitors Bureau. “35 Denton brings in a lot of big names and it’s awesome. But there is media attention from all over the world during that time, [and] our idea was to provide that forum where people get to realize what goes on in Denton 365 days a year — our local talent, our local live music that is giving birth to careers like Sarah Jaffe.”

Teaming up with, Phillips said the event is a vehicle to not just talk about Denton being a great city but to give people an opportunity to see it for themselves.

The event will be held at the same time as 35 Denton, March 7-10.

“Imagine during Twilight Tunes, when there are concerts on the lawn. You still have people milling about … restaurants, stores, getting a beer or a glass of wine. We see our stage as kind of turning on the music in the living room of our home. I really see that being what our mission is,” Phillips said.

“Here is the heartbeat of our city, she said. “It’s this lawn, these restaurants, bars, stores, right here in the heart of our city. It’s something everyone can take home with them.

“Once they know about, they can listen to us anywhere in the world, since it’s an Internet-based station.”

Jake Laughlin, CEO of, said talent for the event is still being booked and it is planned to be a diverse list.

“We’re going to have some kids’ bands like Polly Maynard, Bone Doggie, 11:40 [and] we’re going to have some more eclectic stuff like Richard Gilbert,” Laughlin said.

County Judge Mary Horn said there was some initial concern about the event based on something that happened a few years ago with a previous musical event on the Square during 35 Denton.

“A totally inappropriate group was on stage on the courthouse lawn and it was certainly not what I would categorize as PG-13 entertainment,” Horn said. “And I want citizens to feel free to bring their families to the courthouse lawn and have good clean family entertainment.

“If they want to look at that stuff [non-family-friendly performers], they can go elsewhere.”

Attempts to reach several 35 Denton organizers for comment were unsuccessful.

BJ LEWIS can be reached at 940-566-6889. His e-mail address is .