Jack Johnson concert in St. Augustine | News
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- When Jack Johnson tickets for the St. Augustine Amphitheater were up for sale, the concert sold out in 5 minutes. It was a record for the St. Augustine Amphitheater.
And when Jack Johnson comes to town, more than a stage is set.
An area called the Village Green is set up too.
Jack Johnson -- a mega-hit folk rock singer and surfer – promotes environmental awareness at his concerts. So staff on his tour, such as road manager Max Tischler, sets up booths for local non-profits to connect with concert goers.
The area surrounding the amphitheater is full of non-profits such as Keepers of the Coast and The St. Johns Riverkeeper. Concertgoers are encouraged to stop at the booths and pledge to take action, such as cleaning up beaches or the rivers.
"Jack's not one for preaching from the stage, "Tischler said, "so presenting these groups is a tangible way fans can be involved in."
To get Jack Johnson to even consider coming to town, a prospective venue has to have a few green things going on.
Tischler listed, "Full recycling for the back of the stage, full recycling for the front of the house and for patrons, and we ask they refrain from using plastic bottles for water."
So the tour provides free watering stations where patrons can fill up re-usable bottles instead of using plastic water bottles once.
So how did the St. Augustine amphitheater – with a cozy 4,000 seats -- lure Jack Johnson who usually performs for bigger crowds?
St. Augustine Amphitheater General Manager Ryan Murphy grinned and said, "It was a lot of convincing!"
The St. Augustine Amphitheater was already doing some of that things Jack Johnson wants, such as recycling. It has also started a composting area using the scraps from catering. Now the venue is even trying some new things, inspired by Jack Johnson's tour.
Murphy explained his staff already noticed how much bottle water they were using. He lifted a metal water canteen and said, "No longer are we going to have plastic water bottles. We're giving these canteens to all the stagehands, crew, and volunteers."
And the amphitheater will add its own watering stations.
They're all moves that impressed Johnson's staff.
Tischler smiled and said, "This venue gets it. They're really engaged in what we're trying to do."