NORTHUMBERLAND — Sit back to enjoy outdoor drinks and dining then get up onstage and sing like you mean it.
The Front Street Station is hosting Karaoke on the Patio with Starmaker Entertainment on Wednesdays from 7 to 10 p.m. There is no cover charge.
Jay Seidel Jr., owner of Front Street Station, said the outdoor ambiance seems to draw people to the event.
“People just love it outside,” he said. “It just adds to the atmosphere. People feel safer outside right now, as well, as far as the pandemic.”
The restaurant serves its full menu outside, all tables are spaced six feet apart, sanitizer stations are set up and all servers wear a mask, Seidel said.
Starmaker Entertainment, based in Freeburg, also follows strict COVID-19 precautions, said Deborah Smith, co-owner of the business with her husband, Bill Smith.
“There is one microphone that no one touches, and the microphone is set so that singers sing from a distance,” she said. “Singers use hand sanitizer both before and after singing. Some singers bring their own personal microphone, etc. We have been urging our regular singers to purchase their own microphone.”
Seidel praised Starmaker’s “professional” performance.
“They announce each person,” he said. “They play music in between each (karaoke) song. They really keep it going.”
“The folks that come to sing karaoke love to sing,” Smith said. “Not everyone has the time or capability to sing with a band. It’s everyone’s fantasy to be a lead singer of a band. We give each individual the stage and the lighting, the sound system to be a star and have a great time singing alone or with their friends.”
Some people over the years have actually gained the courage and confidence to pursue their dream and become part of a local band, she added.
“I think people love the entertainment,” Seidel said. “Our patio is so popular this summer. It’s really salvaging our business for us. Plus, you can have a meal while you’re there.”
Starmaker loves coaxing people to muster the courage to belt out a tune. “Over the years we can tell who really wants to get up there but may be a bit too shy,” Smith said. “Bill is very good at getting them on stage with others, or to play a tambourine, sing the chorus with others, play an air guitar. Especially the kids.”
Seidel has seen firsthand how much his patrons appreciate karaoke on the patio.
“It’s a lot of fun,” he said. “Even if you don’t want to sing, come on out and spectate.”
Cindy O. Herman lives in Snyder County. Email her at CindyOHerman@gmail.com.