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Dazzling new tech transforms stage
Linda Jerke
Linda Jerke

Golden Belt Community Concert members noticed a big difference when they came back after a three-month break in the season to attend the DIVAS 3 concert on March 2. Of course, they were eager to get back into the second half of our season.

But many of them didn’t know they were in for a big surprise until the DIVAS 3 opened the concert with our dazzling new stage lighting and sharp images projected by a brand-new projector onto our new 7-by-11-foot screen.

During the break, Gary Parr, owner of Parr Sound & Lighting, had been working diligently to install the new lighting and a new projector that can now give a huge enhancement to our concerts. I think members would agree this new technology actually gave the DIVAS 3 concert the effect of a real Las Vegas show.

Parr, who has been our lighting tech for many years, installed a row of six LED wash lights along the top front edge of the stage, providing more flexibility to reach many more areas of the stage during a performance.

The new lights, for example, can reach a drummer at the back of the stage as well as other performers whose places were difficult to reach with our previous lighting. This digital lighting system has 512 channels and is wirelessly controlled by computer, making it possible for the lights to fade in and out seamlessly and to change colors from white to red, green, blue, purple, depending on how they are programmed.

In addition, Parr installed the new projector and created the large screen for special effects needed by our performers. The new projector allows us to have our own, rather than rent a projector each time we need one. The screen is actually the smooth, white back wall of the stage, and it will give the performers a choice of bringing their own screen(s) or utilizing the one we can provide.

Making this news even better, the Great Bend Recreation Commission has generously paid half of the cost of these improvements while our Golden Belt Community Concert Association has paid the other half.

In response to being chosen to provide these new features for our association Parr commented, “We truly appreciate the Great Bend Recreation Center and Golden Belt Community Concert Association for their support of our local business.”

The concert association is excited to be taking these big improvements into our 2024-2025 season, giving us so much more to offer our performers and our audience. We are equally excited to say we will begin our membership campaign April 5 with an exceptional line-up of seven concerts for our new season — a high-energy country performance with a Cajun twist; two rockstar tribute bands we know people will love; a very dynamic group that relives the early years combining rock and roll, blues, country and jazz; a Broadway spectacular; a classic big band; and an inspiring patriotic concert by one of our favorite groups. Remember, one low membership fee of $50 per adult allows you to attend all seven live concerts.

As is our tradition, we are not divulging the names of the acts until the opening of our membership campaign, but that list gives a kind of sneak preview of what is to come. To see more about our concerts, go to or “Like” us on Facebook.

Linda Jerke is 2nd vice president and publicity chair of the Golden Belt Community Concert Association. She was Localife Editor for the Tribune for 22 years and was a communications specialist in the Office of College Communications at Barton Community College for 17 years before her retirement in 2011. She can be contacted by