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‘They’re booked, they’re paid for, they’re ready’: Humpy’s schedules summer concerts

Published: Jan. 11, 2021 at 7:45 AM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - It’s been a quiet year in Downtown Anchorage where live music hasn’t been allowed in months. With a lot of money, planning and possibly even more hope, Humpy’s Great Alaska Alehouse aims to change that come May.

Management said they and contributors are hoping to make at least a little bit of money, but it’s mostly about giving Alaskans music and giving back to the community through charity donations.

Right now, Mike Middleton with Humpy’s management team said there are four bands booked, paid for and ready to come up to Alaska. He says all are big names and all very expensive to book although he said they’re getting a reduced rate because of the pandemic.

They are set to perform as follows: Saving Abel on May 22, Puddle of Mudd on June 5, The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus on June 18 and Badflower on June 19.

Of course, it’s going to be warm by then, so Middleton said they’re going to be taking it outside.

Those familiar with the layout of Humpy’s know there is a large parking lot and alleyway out in the back. Middleton said they’re planning to put the stage either all the way in the back of that lot pointed toward the bar, or possibly on F Street facing the bar at an angle.

He said the lot is about 12,000 square feet and depending on how much of F Street they could use, it could add up to about 26,500 square feet. There would also be Humpy’s patio for space.

“We don’t want to fill the space and pack people in like a giant mosh pit. We want to provide everybody with areas where they can sit down,” he said.

Without disclosing exact figures, Middleton said the bands aren’t cheap and hundreds of thousands have already been spent booking them. They can’t get that money back.

However, Middleton said it’s not just Humpy’s money. In fact, it wasn’t even all their idea. He said they were approached by a pair of well-to-do patrons who “want to save downtown Anchorage.” Middleton said one of them has the money, the other has the contacts.

At the time of this publication, Middleton said he had not discussed whether they wanted to be identified to the media, and said he didn’t know if it wasn’t appropriate to say who they were yet.

“They’re not glory hounds or anything like that,” Middleton said. “They were looking for a partner that could handle this level of event and had a suitable space to do it in. They were looking for a partner with experience in it and expertise.”

When approached, Middleton said the mysterious patrons did not express that they wanted this to be an event to defy the municipality. He said the first questions they asked were about how to do the concert safely.

Pre-registration for tickets is available but Humpy’s isn’t taking anyone’s money yet, according to Middleton. Those pre-registered folks get first dibs on tickets, and if COVID-19 cancels the concerts there will be a 100% refund.

The ticket price has yet to be set, but he said they would be cheap considering the level of performance.

Whatever it ends up being, they’re giving a lot of the money back to Anchorage.

“One of the prime things that was involved that the benefactors decided was to involve as many local charities as possible and to really give a significant amount of money back to the community.”

Even after being shut down three times with all the other bars and restaurants, Middleton said they’re going for it and they have to be optimistic.

He said they’re hopeful because there are two vaccines rolling out. Middleton also frankly pointed out the number of Alaskans who have contracted COVID-19 without perishing, therefore adding to the number of people who hopefully wouldn’t get sick.

“I think that by then, unfortunately, if things haven’t opened up very much, if we’re not allowed to keep progressing then there’s not going to be much downtown left to save,” he said.

When it comes down to show time, Middleton said they will not do the concert if it is deemed unsafe and will follow any and all health mandates in effect come May.

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