Local talent to hit stage in Bethany

During the summer months, the Bethany Beach Bandstand schedule is packed with a wide variety of performances by semi-professional and professional talent. But on Aug. 17, locals and visitors alike will have the opportunity to stand on the bandstand and perform for the crowd.

“Anyone can sign up. We have had them as young as 3 years old and probably beyond 73,” said Gloria Farrar, entertainment director for the Town of Bethany Beach.

While she didn’t know how the talent show got started, Farrar said it has been an annual event in the town for more than 13 years.

“People look so forward to it. I have people asking me earlier in the year, ‘What day is the talent show going to be?’”

The acts themselves vary, but Farrar said the majority of the participants sing.

“Mostly they are singing their favorite pop artist. Some do country-Western. Our oldest participant does a Frank Sinatra tune and wows the crowd. We do have a baton twirler, Brooke Mitchell from Starlights in Georgetown. She has won many contests with her baton twirling,” she said. “We have a lot of returning performers,” she added.

Farrar said that a maximum of 25 acts may be performed but that the acts themselves can have numerous performers.

“Some families get involved. They do solo acts, but they’re all singing, like a mom and a son and a daughter are all three different acts in the show,” she said. “We do limit each performer to one song, because it’s a popular event and we want everyone to have a chance to perform.”

Farrar emphasized that the talent show is not a competition, but rather an opportunity for those brave souls who wish to get up on the stage to showcase their talents.

“Everybody will get a little reward item that town hall sponsors,” she added.

The free event will be held rain or shine this year, as Farrar said the Bethany Beach Fire Department will host the event at the fire hall if the weather is bad.

“What is different this year is we’re going to go to the fire hall, to the east bay, if the weather is not good. They are very accommodating,” said Farrar of the fire company. “Last year, we had bad weather and everybody was so disappointed.”

Farrar said she hopes that the public will come out to support the show’s performers and enjoy a lovely evening of entertainment at the beach.

“A lot of the audience is very supportive families that come out to support their kids… It’s a very popular night.”