They gathered around a bonfire one summer evening to enjoy good company and the soothing crackle created by the flames.  Little did they know the experience would ultimately result in FireSide – the band performing at LakewoodAlive’s Front Porch Concert Series at 7 p.m. this Friday, Sept. 9.

FireSide Lakewood

Photo Credit: FireSide Lakewood / Alanna Restifo

Sponsored by Bentley Wealth Management of Raymond James, the Front Porch Concert Series features free, live music on the front porch of Lakewood Public Library (15425 Detroit Avenue) in Downtown Lakewood for 12 consecutive Fridays.  The series, which aims to foster and sustain Lakewood’s vibrancy while providing a family-friendly summer entertainment option, runs through September 16.

Week 11 of the series is presented by lion & blue and brings to the stage FireSide.  This Lakewood-based acoustic rock band consists of John Levis (Vocals/Guitar), Tom Leatherman (Vocals/Keyboards/Percussion), Lance Healy (Percussion/Harmonica), Frank Restifo (Electric Guitar/Sax/ Vocals) and Jim Latham (Bass).

FireSide – both the name and the band – originated when a group of dads played instruments around a campfire while camping with their children and the YMCA Adventure Guides.  The group enjoyed playing together, and FireSide was born.  The band offers fun, unique musical renditions while covering a wide variety of classic rock artists, including Crosby, Stills & Nash, Simon & Garfunkel and The Beatles.

“Four of us are long-time Lakewood dads who have enjoyed raising families in our wonderful town,” said Leatherman.  “We are blessed to be able to play our favorite songs for our friends – especially at an outdoor venue that is accessible to families and people of all ages!  Lakewood Rocks!!”

Now in its sixth year, the popular Front Porch Concert Series adds vibrancy and an enhanced sense of community to Lakewood’s urban core, drawing several thousand attendees annually.  Each week showcases a different style of music while Lakewoodites and visitors enjoy an entertaining evening at an open-air venue.  Attendees are encouraged to bring family, friends, snacks, blankets and chairs.

The Front Porch Concert Series is supported by the following sponsors: Bentley Wealth Management of Raymond James, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, City of Lakewood, Cox Communications, Discount Drug Mart, Lakewood Public Library, Lion & Blue, Paisley Monkey, Pillars of Lakewood and Vance Music Studios.