By Tzar Wilkerson
2019’s “Concerts in the Courtyard” series is off to a particularly strong start. According to the grill’s General Manager, Lee Ammann “This year’s been the best start to any year we’ve had – usually the first few weeks are a little slower. This year, the 2nd week we had a great turnout; the deck was full and the lawn was full. We encourage everybody to come out early, because we will fill up fast.”
Performers in a variety of genres will be playing at the concerts, from reggae to jazz to rock to blues to surf music. “We usually try to get going between 6 and 6:30, depending on the band and how far they have to travel. The music generally runs until about 9 o’clock depending on the crowd. If everybody’s having a good time, sometimes we go a little bit later. Of course, with inclement weather, depending on the band, sometimes we move them inside or on the deck. It’s not always cancelled just because it’s raining, so be looking on our website if you do see rain in the forecast.” Fantastic music isn’t all the concerts have to offer, says Ammann, “We are looking to do some beer and wine tastings to accompany the Tuesday night music, as we get into the season. So that’ll be something else to look forward to, to accompany the music.”
Ammann was also excited about recent remodels and other improvements at the grill: “This’ll be the 2nd year with the outdoor stage on the lawn. We just redid the deck, so now we’ll have an outdoor bar on the deck. There’s a little more seating in the courtyard and we just redid the lighting so that everybody’s not sitting in the dark. [Our recent interior remodel] opened everything up to try and make everybody feel a little more welcome and make it feel like nobody’s being sectioned off.” Bayou Smokehouse and Grill is quickly becoming one of Banner Elk’s finer eateries, and the concerts are the perfect opportunity to check out its improved offerings while you enjoy live music and drinks.
“We’ve got a lot of exciting things going on.” said Ammann. “We are currently working on our website, so that should be up-and-running soon. We’re also looking into doing a few different events. We’re throwing around some ideas for family nights, trivia nights, some other live music nights. Just keep looking at our Facebook page. We have a lot of things in the works.”