ALTON - The Liberty Bank Amphitheater hosted their “I Love the 90s” show on Aug. 4 with performances from Vanilla Ice, Rob Base, All 4 One and Tag Team. Community members from every generation came together to celebrate the night of nostalgia.
“The ‘I Love the 90s’ show at the amphitheater was a great success that brought another large crowd to our riverfront for an evening of quality entertainment,” said Dan Herkert, a member of the Alton Amphitheater Commission. “It was great to see so many people having such a good time. The Amphitheater Commission is delighted to organize these events for our community.”
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As they waited for the show to start, attendees enjoyed food trucks, music by a local DJ and additional catering by Johnson’s Corner. They could also participate in a meet-and-greet after the performances. While the 90s music was especially fun for audience members who lived through the decade, the event drew people of all ages.
“That’s the great thing about this line-up, it is kind of for everybody,” Alton Police Chief Jarrett Ford said. “Whether you were a kid in the 90s like myself or a little older or younger, it’s still classic music, great music, and everybody can come out and have a great time to it.”
Ford explained that the police department was present to provide security, but their secondary goal was to engage with the community. Many other city administrators and officials took the chance to connect with Alton residents.
And, of course, they were also there to enjoy the music. Alton Mayor David Goins noted that he was excited to see Vanilla Ice because he has fond memories of his children dancing to the rapper’s songs.
“My kids grew up on Vanilla Ice,” he explained. “I remember we took our kids to Six Flags right when Vanilla Ice and the song [‘Ice Ice Baby’] was popular. We paid for our kids to do an MTV video at Six Flags. They actually got fake guitars and microphones, and they actually did an Ice Ice Baby video.”
The memory still makes him laugh. But Goins confided that he prefers Vanilla Ice’s “Ninja Rap” which plays during the movie “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II” because his kids “loved it.”
In addition to audience members who, like Goins, have great memories of 90s music, several younger people in the crowd made their own connections that night.
The Marquette Catholic High School football team volunteered throughout the evening, and they presented Vanilla Ice with a jersey at the rapper’s request. Other people, like Andy Prehn with Johnson’s Corner, enjoyed hearing old favorites. He noted that it was great to see so many people in the community coming together to have a fun night.
“I heard a little of the soundcheck, and it brought back a lot of memories,” Prehn said, adding, “The City of Alton is doing it right.”
Herkert also said: "The Amphitheater Commission wanted to thank volunteers, city staff, and producer, Evntiv, for all the hard work they put in behind the scenes to make this event a success."
Visit the amphitheater’s official website to see a list of upcoming events. To learn more about the “I Love the 90s” show, you can watch our pre-show hosted by C.J. Nasello here or on our website at RiverBender.com.
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