A popular annual Masters Week concert is moving to Columbia County.
The First Tee of Augusta officials announced Tuesday morning that the ninth annual Drive for Show, Rock Fore! Dough will be held April 9 at the Lady Antebellum Pavilion in Evans Towne Center Park.
The concert “has become a hospitality and entertainment staple here in Augusta on the Tuesday of Masters Week. It’s been a great success for us and a great fundraiser for us,” First Tee Executive Director Jill Brown said. “It’s still on the Tuesday of Masters Week, just in a new place.”
Performers Needtobreathe and Grace Potter were also announced Tuesday.
The concert previously was held at the First Tee facility on Damascus Road in Augusta.
“Our (First Tee) infrastructure is not naturally suited to be a concert venue,” Brown said during the announcement at Evans Towne Center Park. “This is a beautiful facility. It is a great venue for guests and it’s a great venue for music.”
Staging the event at First Tee long has been a challenge for organizers, who were had rent expensive portable stages for performers, who have included Zac Brown Band, Darius Rucker and Cheap Trick.
The park allows First Tee to save time and money.
“It’s a huge financial savings for sure,” said a Rock Fore! Dough concert producer Joe Stephenson, of GlueStick Music. “Any time you’re talking about making an event better and being able to save some money and have something new to talk about too. We want to make it fresh. We want the event not to be the same old, same old. This was really a natural move for me.”
It’s at least the third major event that has moved to the Evans park, along with Thunder Over Augusta, which moved from downtown last year, and Papa Joe’s Banjo-B-Que, which relocated from North Augusta.
“To say that Columbia County is excited about this move to our facility is a gross understatement,” Columbia County Commission Chairman Ron Cross said. “We’re just tickled to death that you have chosen to come out and be a part of ParTee at the Park celebration that goes on all week during Masters Week.”
Stephenson said he was involved with Banjo-B-Que and was impressed with the venue.
“It’s an easy venue,” Stephenson said. “It’s a win-win for First Tee and Columbia County.”
Proceeds from Rock Fore! Dough support The First Tee of Augusta, the Augusta chapter of The First Tee Network. Rock Fore! Dough raised nearly $550,000 in the previous eight years.
Since it began in 1997, The First Tee has opened more than 200 learning facilities worldwide, established more than 335 affiliate relationships with existing golf courses and introduced more than 2.3 million young people to golf.
“We’re excited about being able to save funds so that we can do greater things for the youth in our community,” Brown said. “That’s really the reason we decided to give this a shot.”
Tickets go on sale Feb. 23. at www.rockforedough.com and Kroger grocery stores. Tickets cost $25 in advance and $35 the day of the event. VIP tables also are available.