Rock the Block holds first concert of the summer

Published 11:00 am Thursday, June 13, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

It was a busy week for downtown Winchester as the first week of June ended. 

While the Kentucky Beer Cheese Festival was celebrated on June 8, the downtown area was also festive on the night of Friday, June 7. 

A few weeks after the intended Opening Night event was canceled due to inclement weather, Rock the Block returned to Winchester to the satisfaction of hundreds in attendance. 

Email newsletter signup

The monthly summer series began with the efforts of City Commissioner Kitty Strode, Wallace “Gator” Harrison, and the late Graham Johns. 

We wanted to have a downtown music [event]. We came up with the name, and ‘Rock the Block’ was the one that was picked,” Strode said. “We’re still going strong now and have the same sponsors [since] the beginning. Nobody’s ever dropped out.” 

Traditional Bank served as the sponsor for Friday’s event. 

Those who attended Rock the Block included notable Winchester officials, such as former Mayor Ed Burtner and current Magistrate Robert Blanton. 

With many setting up lawn chairs on and along Main Street, The Mercy Men Band took the steps of the Clark County Courthouse and began playing. 

While some sang along and danced, memorable hits from multiple genres, such as R&B, soul, funk, and rock, could be heard. 

They included “Mustang Sally,” “Shut Up and Dance With Me,” “More Today Than Yesterday,” and “Proud Mary.” 

Toyajavonne Johnson, who serves as one of the singers for the band, even sang “I Have Nothing” by the late Whitney Houston. 

“She had a huge voice [and] a huge personality when it comes to music,” Johnson said. “I just love keeping [people] happy…anything I can do to uplift them.” 

As individuals walked down Main Street toward Depot Street, they were greeted by another sight. 

A number of vehicles on display to make up a car show were present. 

Among them were several Chevrolet brands, such as the Corvette, Camaro, and Silverado 1500 pickup truck.

Different manufacturers, such as Ford, were also represented. 

Jerry Floyd, from just outside town, brought his 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner. 

“I’ve fully restored the car,” he said. “I’m a Mopar man…I’m really into old muscle cars.” 

For those who attended, the evening they offered plenty of reasons to return for more. 

“I love live music. I used to pay to go to big concerts and stuff, but I get just as much pleasure coming into an event like this and pouring their heart into their music,” said resident Ron Kibbee. 

The next Rock the Block event is scheduled for Friday, July 26, at 7:00 p.m.