Less than a week removed from some of the region’s most devastating tornado activity, the eighth season of Friday Night Live opened on the Town Green of Herndon last Friday evening, May 3 under overcast skies, chilly temperatures, but a receptive audience.
"The band is good," said Kim Weigend, 15, from Fairfax, a freshman at Chantilly High School, attending the season opener of Friday Night Live with her parents. "I like the sound of their music. They look cute from here," she said of the opening band Crawling Home from Alexandria.
"It’s not raining," said Herndon Dulles Chamber of Commerce events coordinator Melyssa Ferber of Herndon, just three weeks on the job. "Besides a little chill, everyone seems comfortable. It’s going to be a good summer," she said.
"I’ve been to Friday Night Live many times," said Herndon networking engineer Rob Zombrom. "I’m enjoying the band. It’s free; they have beer, food and good music. Plus I can get my friends with kids out here. Parents can have a couple of beers and kids can run amok," he said.
"I’ve been coming to Friday Night Live for seven years," said Sterling resident Jimmy Womack, "but I used to live in Herndon for a long time. My daughter has a great time," said Womack of two-year-old Keira Womack. "I can have a couple of beers and see a whole lot of people I grew up with," he said.
"I’m friends with Chris Rossbach with The Plunge," said Melissa Voivoda of Ashburn, as to her attendance last Friday evening. The Plunge, a Sterling band and main act of the night, followed Crawling Home on the Town Green stage. "We come out here a lot — for a number of years. We love it. Now that we have children we can bring them and have fun with our friends. My son Luke, [two and a half] is running around chasing bubbles," said Voivoda.
"We come every year," said Herndon resident Shari Purvis, a teacher at Christian Fellowship in Ashburn. "This makes our fourth year since we’ve lived here. It’s a chance to relax after a hard week, get together with friends and I like that it’s free. I also like the music," said Purvis, attending with her son Ryan, 13 months, her husband and "a huge group of friends."
Prior to concluding its set, Crawling Home dedicated a song to Rhonda Layton, who worked her last Friday Night Live as events coordinator for the chamber of commerce after a three-year stint with that organization. "This is the thing I’ll miss the most, and the people. Friday Night Live has gotten better and better each year," said Layton as she departs for Idaho.
Friday Night Live continues each Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. through Aug. 23, save for May 31, the weekend of the Herndon Festival. For more information about Friday Night Live check out the website at www.herndonrocks.com or call 703-481-6133.