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F.M. Kirby Fest Fundraiser Offers Live Music, Food, Drinks & More image
Live Music & Theater
April 09, 2024
F.M. Kirby Fest Fundraiser Offers Live Music, Food, Drinks & More

Exciting Night Raises Funding For The Arts

F.M. Kirby Fest is always a marquee night for our nonprofit—this year, it’s more important than ever.

From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 20, the 6th annual F.M. Kirby Fest presented by Metro takes over our historic Art Deco theater for a night of pints, pinot and performing arts! The evening’s proceeds benefit community outreach programs like our Laux Young People’s Theater Series. This annual series of five educational yet entertaining performances brings 7,000 local students to our theater completely free of charge.

Expect free food samples and drink tastings, live music, an exciting lineup of local artists, photos at the Magic Mirror Photo Booth, and a complimentary glass to take home! A full list of participants can be found below.

“We’re fortunate to have so many local businesses that want to support the F.M. Kirby Center,” Executive Director Joell Yarmel said. “We’re excited to highlight them and give them a chance to show off their talent—whether that be through food, drink, music, or art. This event sells out every year, so I think it’s safe to say we’re doing something right!”

Our silent auction is returning, too, giving you another chance to take home amazing items—including posters signed by F.M. Kirby Center stars! Browsing the auction, which takes place on our auditorium’s stage, also affords the rare opportunity to see our theater the way performers do.

During F.M. Kirby Fest, we utilize every inch of our building for two reasons: to offer access to as many food and drink samples as possible, and to extend an open invitation to explore. In addition to our stage, patrons can relax in our main lobby, go upstairs to our mezzanine lobby, or take a seat anywhere on our auditorium’s main floor.

“This is such a special night for our staff because we really get to showcase the beautiful building we have the privilege of working in every day,” Yarmel said.

Previous F.M. Kirby Fest attendees may even remember traveling downstairs to our gallery, a great gathering space full of art and music. Unfortunately, that space remains closed due to the flood we experienced on Oct. 10, 2023.

After the Flood

That we’re still dealing with the fallout of last year’s flooding hints at just how catastrophic the incident was.

Sure, we were quick to address any issue that directly inconvenienced concertgoers. Thanks to the tireless work of our staff and our show partners, less than a handful of performances were cancelled or rescheduled—and only 12 days after the flood, we welcomed guests for the annual Bazaar of the Bizarre vendor fair. However, while the damage to our events calendar was mitigated, the destruction on the F.M. Kirby Center’s lower floor was rampant.

Over 6 ft. of water filled our downstairs spaces, including offices, restrooms, dressing rooms, catering areas, bar storage, the Mohegan Lounge, and the aforementioned large gallery space that’s so welcoming during F.M. Kirby Fest. Walls were destroyed. Items as large as couches and desks—even our 80 sq. ft. walk-in cooler—were picked up and moved by the sheer amount of water. Perhaps most heartbreaking were the hundreds of personal items belonging to staff members found sitting soaked in dirty hallways. Many were irreplaceable mementos collected by staff during their years of service.

We continue to work towards an eventual reopening of our downstairs areas, but we couldn’t have made the progress we have without community partners who see us as a priority in Wilkes-Barre. By purchasing a ticket to F.M. Kirby Fest, you’re prioritizing us, too—and we plan to thank you by hosting quality entertainment, as well as important programs like the Laux YPTS, for years to come.


Get Your Tickets

F.M. Kirby Fest tickets are available at our box office, open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on show days through the start of a performance. On weekend show days, our box office opens at 3 p.m. During those hours, dial 570-826-1100 to purchase from our box office on the phone. Or, purchase your F.M. Kirby Fest tickets online.

Tickets to F.M. Kirby Fest are $35 in advance or $40 on the day of the event. F.M. Kirby Center members can access a special $30 price for advance tickets—just call or stop by our box office to take advantage of this discount.

In addition to presenting sponsor Metro, this event is also made possible by sponsors like Highmark, The Luzerne Foundation, and so many others.

Tastings by:
Bank+Vine, B&G Winery LLC, Benny Brewing Company, Berwick Brewing Company, Blue Mountain Vineyards & Cellars, Constantino’s Catering, Culinary Creations by Metz, Deep Roots Hard Cider, Diamond City Vault Bar & Grill, Grovedale Winery, Holy Ghost Distillery Inc., Last Minute Brewing, L.T. Verrastro Inc., Northeast Eagle, Pour Coffee House, Rodano’s, Royal Bakery & Café, Sugar Plum Chocolates, Talerico’s Tropical Winery

Music by:
Jamie Anzalone from County Lines, k8, DymondCutter

Art by:
Lois Pluskey Fine Art, Scott Kucharski, Alan McLaughlin