Wood-fired pizza and live music have become an annual summer tradition -- in years past, Wednesday nights have meant a trip to Zwingli United Church of Christ in Berne, cash in hand.
But in its ninth year, wood-fired pizza nights will have to continue with a twist: pizza pick-ups and curb-side musicians.
Every Wednesday night from June through August, the event will feature a different musician. The June line-up includes Ray Coudret (June 3), guitarists and singers Dino & Vino (June 10), Scott Jasmin (June 17), and Nathan Davidson (June 24). Guests can park in the parking lot to eat their pizza and tune in to the live music on 98.1 FM, but are asked to remain in their vehicles.
“Although we can't congregate, having joint experiences -- even if that means from inside of our vehicles -- provides a level of escapism that is missing from our everyday lives,” said Angela Organ, the church’s public relations director.
Dan VanHook, owner of Spectrum Pro Audio, donated his time and equipment to help broadcast the music until it’s safe to resume the outdoor concerts, Organ said. “This virus is not going away any time soon,” she added.
Destiny Boyum, the “Dino” in Dino & Vino (performing next Wednesday) said she’s excited to perform with Michelle Hilsman, her musical partner of three years. The pair will play covers of Ed Sheeran and Fleetwood Mac, she said, with some country music thrown in.
Despite not being able to rehearse together until recently and having most of their performances canceled because of social distancing, Boyum sees music as an important component to help get through these tough times.
“It has the power to help us share in our experiences and combat those feelings of isolation,” she said.
No preorders for the pizza are necessary. Just drive into the church’s circle where the musicians will be performing, indicate the number of pizzas you’d like to order from your car, and they will be left on a table to pick up. Each 14-inch inch pizza is $20. Make sure to have exact change or a check and be ready to contribute to the musicians. Proceeds from the volunteer-staffed event will go to support both the Zwingli Church and other non-profit organizations.
The pizzas will be served with close attention to safety.
“A lot of thought has gone into creating a drive-through system that will be completely contactless for guests,” Organ said. Beside handwashing, sanitation measures, and use of personal protective equipment, Organ says volunteers will undergo temperature checks. “We want to do this right and take our responsibility to provide a safe experience seriously,” she said.
If You Go
What: Berne Wood-Fired Pizza pickup and curbside music
Where: Zwingli United Church of Christ, 23148 County Highway 24, West Concord
When: 5-8 p.m. with music 5:30-7:30 every Wednesday, June through August
More Information: www.bernepizza.org
June 3 - Ray Coudret from Fred the Bear -- Meat lovers pizza
June 10 - Dino & Vino -- Bacon cheeseburger
June 17 - Scott Jasmin -- Meat lovers pizza
June 24 - Nathan Davidson -- Bacon cheeseburger