Hello! My name is Andrea and I am a sales manager for the Columbia Convention & Visitors Bureau. I am an avid traveler, and I love the experience of meeting new people, experiencing new unexpected environments, the FOOD, the art, music and just soaking it all up.
Each month I am going to introduce you, our visitor, to all things Columbia, especially our fabulous arts community. Along the way we will explore some of our fabulous locally- owned restaurants or one of our many music venues or fabulous festivals. I hope you enjoy this city as much as I do, and of course, we would love to have you back many times to take advantage
of WHAT YOU UNEXPECT.
Welcome to Columbia! At this point, you’ve more than likely checked out our website, and perhaps you follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter or Instagram. Maybe you’re in town for the weekend or just a few days during the week; you know all about our great restaurants, and you’ve had a chance to check out some of our great microbreweries and distilleries. But do you know where to see live theater or a great band? Columbia has great venues for live shows and music.
For over 100 years, the University Concert Series has brought some of the best entertainment in the world to Columbia – from standup routines by Bill Cosby and Tim Conway to performances from Itzak Perlman and YoYo Ma, the Concert Series has a performance for every taste. The University Concert Series features Broadways productions, dance, string quartets and orchestras, and even a little bit of rock ‘n roll like John Mellencamp, who will grace the Jesse Auditorium stage in October.
Do you prefer to see a local cast? You are in luck – the Columbia Entertainment Company recruits cast members from the community. Their season runs September through June and features popular musicals like Mary Poppins, The Music Man, and A Chorus Line. The Maplewood Barn Theatre also features a local cast and performs under the summer stars in historic Nifong Park. This year’s line-up includes Macbeth, Godspell, Oliver, Steel Magnolias and more.
If music is more your style, head over to The Blue Note. A Columbia mainstay since 1980, it started with local and regional bands then welcomed artists such as Arcade Fire, The Black Keys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, R.E.M., Johnny Cash and many others. Be sure to stop by Rose Music Hall, owned by the guys of The Blue Note. The Rose is known for live music in a park setting. Be sure to come hungry and enjoy tacos from Pepe’s, because “tacos taste better on the front row!”
If you are up for a little drive then be sure to head over to Rocheport and check out the live music at Les Bourgeois Vineyards A-Frame. Each Saturday, music fills the air at the A-Frame from 4 p.m. to sunset. Enjoy a glass of wine, watch the rolling Missouri river and listen to the sounds of local favorites like the Flood Brothers, the Norm Ruebling Band, and the BluesSlingers. Just down the road from Les Bourgeois is the quaint town of Rocheport. Founded in 1825, this historic river community is home to many antique shops, the Katy Trail, artist studios and several great restaurants. Be sure to stop into the Rocheport General Store for live music every weekend.
Regardless of what you choose, Columbia has many fun, interesting and unique venues to enjoy!