If you’ve lived in Tallahassee for the last seven years and seen, heard about, or attended a free concert at Cascades Park, then chances are you’ve gotten to enjoy the effort and love event producer Elias Mathes has poured into the downtown community. But on Saturday, November 26th, Elias nicknamed Ely, will take his last bow as the series producer. The concert will feature local band Revival from 7-10PM. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own food and drinks- or find them onsite as there will be several food truck options like Andrew’s Catering, Argonaut Coffee, and more!
The idea for a reoccurring concert series to take place during the summer months in Tallahassee was created by Jay Revell in 2015, while he served as the CEO of the Downtown Improvement Authority. Revell said, “The Concert Series was born from a desire to help activate Cascades Park with free community programming. We knew this incredible urban space had the potential to bring our neighbors together to celebrate what makes Tallahassee great and the Series has helped make that a reality. Elias Mathes has been a huge part of that success. He was with us on day 1 and has helped make these events a can’t miss experience for everyone who calls Tallahassee home. We owe him many thanks for that hard work!”
With the help of many generous sponsors, the talent from bands far and wide, the audio and visual producers, and the hard work of Elias and his team, the Concert Series kicked off its first show. Since then, The Sundown Concert Series has hosted notable bands like Drivin N Cryin, Futurebirds, Sauce Boss Bill Wharton, The Lee Boys, and most recently, The Filthy Six, an acid jazz band all the way from London.
However, the series doesn’t stop at bringing outside talent to come play in Tallahassee. It’s also given many beloved Tallahassee bands the chance to play on the big stage at Cascades Park. Ely broadened the organization’s network with our own local talent, emphasizing this over the pandemic,ensuring it was our bands who first had the opportunity for paid gigs on the stage. He worked tirelessly to ensure public safety plans were in place allowing the concert to continue during 2020 and 2021.
In 2019, the concert series was able to expand so that each month a free concert takes place from May until November, allowing the public to continue to enjoy the free concerts into the cooler months. Locally owned businesses have also felt the benefits of this expansion, as concertgoers have been encouraged to visit local bars and restaurants before the show and even bring drinks and food from them to it.
Elias’s generous hard work doesn’t end with the Sundown Concert Series, though. He’s also helped run the Downtown Get Downs until their end and has stepped in to support the Countdown Downtown New Year’s Eve concert and firework show. So dedicated to the cause, Elias moved to Asheville for a few years and would travel back and forth to ensure the success and continuation of the events. Unable to stay away, Elias moved back to Tallahassee and has continued to give back to his community ever since.
Downtown Improvement Authority’s current CEO ELizabeth Emmanuel said, “Our organization has been made better because of the hard work of Ely. He’s spent the past several years not just growing our events and providing an incredible experience- but making it cool. From Downtown Get Downs to the Concert Series to the Downtown New Year’s Eve Experience, Ely has been an instrumental part of our organization- creating the kind of community young professionals want to enjoy and by default, making it so enjoyable everyone has a good time there. We’re going to continue the good work he’s created and can’t wait to make him proud of what we accomplish in his honor.”
Though Elias is stepping down from his role as the Sundown Concert Series event producer, the series will continue to take place as the Downtown Concert Series with the next concert in May. To receive more updates on the event, you can follow Tallahassee Downtown Improvement Authority on their Facebook, Instagram, and website.
Join our community in thanking Ely for his dedication while celebrating some of the most amazing live music in our community with Revival this Saturday, November 26, from 6-10pm.
Our Work is to make downtown work better, promoting Tallahassee Downtown as a growing destination for development through business, entrepreneurship, ongoing education, resources, and entertainment for any individual. We were created by state statute in 1971, and it has since been our mission to bring more businesses, community members, satisfaction, and safety into the heart of our community. In our special taxing district, we have 630 businesses, 20,000 employees (one-tenth of the workforce!), 889 hotel rooms, 23 restaurants, 11 museums and galleries, 10 parks, and so much more to offer the community. We advocate for our businesses’ needs, addressing key issues like seasonal foot traffic, beautification, and asset promotion. For more information about the Tallahassee Downtown Improvement Authority, please visit http://tlhdowntown.com/