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Songs at sunset
April 11, 2018

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Local tunes, local brews and a local venue.

What sounds better than listening to island star Sheena Brook at the Mound House?

Saturday, April 21, the Mound House will host its first-ever music event at the historic site.

From 5 to 7:30 p.m., The Mound House will be the place to be. Brook begins playing at 6 p.m.

Throughout the evening, Momentum Brew House of Bonita Springs will serve tastings of its locally-brewed beers and Jewban's Deli Dle, a local food vendor, will supply its Jewish and Cuban style sandwiches and dishes. The grounds will be open to walk and take in the scene of Estero Bay at sunset; parts of the museum will be open during the event. Tickets are $15 or $10 for Mound House members; they can be purchased at the Mound House gift shop. Tickets are limited, but if any are left they can be purchased at the gate the night of the event. Attendees should bring chairs, but coolers are not allowed.

Director Alison Giesen hopes it will be the first of many Music on the Mound events to come.

"This property will be a wonderful venue," she said.

Since Giesen assumed her role several years ago, she's been working to expand what's offered at the Mound House to attract different audiences - and to give residents and locals a new reason to return.

Funds raised from ticket sales, and a percentage of food sales, are going to help the Mound House create a summer camp program for island children and fund scholarships to cover registration cost for families.

There's no set start date yet for summer camp, but it's a goal the Mound House stakeholders developed in its strategic plan last year.

"We're trying to develop a unique program, and make sure what we offer is different," Giesen said. "I'm excited to start the process."

The Beaches of Fort Myers and Sanibel, also known as the Lee County Visitors and Convention Bureau, will be attending Music on the Mound to promote the 2018 Island Hopper Songerwriter's Festival, an annual event that highlights up-and-coming singers and songwriters from around the country in a two-week session, with shows in Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel.

Brook is a past participant of the Island Hopper and a local celebrity after her participation on the TV show, The Voice. She frequently performs for local charities and events on Fort Myers Beach.

"I always wanted Sheena to be the first (musician)," Giesen said. "She's a great local artist and a great person."

Brook is excited to be the debut for the Mound House's new event series. She said she's planning to stick to her original, songwriter style tunes so people attending get a feel for what the Island Hopper festival is like, too.

"The Mound House is such a beautiful property that everyone has worked so hard to preserve. Alison has done so much amazing stuff with it," she said. "I'm going to play with the back drop of the Bay. It's going to be really fun."

With all the locality involved - the brewery, the food, the location, and the music - Brook thought the event was a great idea that would be fun for all.

"Any time our town and locals are involved, it's so fun. We have the best people," she said.

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Regular Size Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer