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Bridgeville library to continue popular open mic night

| Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013, 9:02 p.m.

A program designed to revolve around craft beer and live music at the Bridgeville Public Library has been so popular that organizers have decided to extend its run.

The library's Open Mic & Craft Beer Swap, which began in May, originally was supposed to end with summer, but organizers plan to continue it through the holidays.

“A lot of libraries, on average, see anywhere from five to 10 attendees at their adult programs,” said library board member Mike Aquilina. “We're averaging 25 on the low end up to 35 or 40 for our open mic nights.”

The program is held on alternating Sundays and serves as an open stage for local musicians who are looking to perform for an audience.

At the same time, the craft beer swap acts as an outlet for beer aficionados to share and compare brews.

“It's very difficult for public libraries to bring people in for adult programs, especially ones not geared toward senior citizens,” Aquilina said. “We've absolutely been successful in this.”

In addition to extending the program, Aquilina and open mic host Kim Losego have added a set of mini concerts to the library's program schedule.

The concerts will feature Pittsburgh area musicians who might not draw a full crowd, as the summer concert series acts have, but who are performing, professional musicians.

Aquilina said the plan is to book professional musicians every few open mic nights and have them close out the show.

“We want people to see them,” he said. “It allows for them to play for a small crowd and do a short set in an intimate venue. It's nice for open mic performers to interact with some of these folks who have been in the Pittsburgh music scene for years and maybe get to jam with them.”

The next Open Mic & Craft Beer Swap is Oct. 6, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Bridgeville library. The open mic stage is open to all ages, but beer swap participants must be at least 21.

Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5810 or mguza@tribweb.com.

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