Koka Booth Reopens This Week, with Movies by Moonlight

The N.C. Symphony Orchestra is expected to return to the Koka Booth Amphitheatre this summer.

Koka Booth Amphitheatre is taking a cautious approach to bringing live music and arts back to the people of Cary, starting Thursday, April 1.

The Town of Cary outdoor amphitheater kicks off a limited schedule at reduced capacity starting April Fool’s Day with the screening of the 2018 film “Green Book.” The first flick in the popular WakeMed Movies by Moonlight series will bring an end to a 15-month hiatus that has kept the 7,000-seat venue closed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s exciting because we’ve been waiting so long,” Town of Cary Cultural Arts Manager William Lewis said. “At the same time it’s a little daunting just trying to get restarted under such conditions. Either which way, we’d rather be at this position than any other — ready to reopen and reengage, which is all we want to do in this in this industry of convening people around music and arts.”

Schedule of Events

Movies by Moonlight
April 1 Green Book
April 2 Yesterday
April 9 The High Note
April 16 Captain Marvel
April 23 Aladdin (2019)
April 30 Impractical Jokers
May 7 Trolls World Tour
May 14 Aquaman
May 21 Little
May 28 Star Wars “The Rise of Skywalker”

Josh Cellars Jazz Series
April 7 La Fiesta
April 14 Will McBride Group
April 21 Peter Lamb & The Wolves
April 28 Tea Cup Gin
May 5 Freeport Jazz

For now, the experience at Koka Booth will be different than what it was before the pandemic, with additional rules and restrictions for health and safety. Masks are required for all attendees, who will scan their own tickets for entry and sit in pods that ensure proper social distancing. A new clear bag policy will also be instituted at the gate.

The venue plans to reevaluate and build up to larger crowds as restrictions continue to ease, but will start by selling about 800 tickets per event — allowing plenty of space for attendees to spread out. Tickets must be purchased ahead of time.

“We may add to that capacity, sooner rather than later, but our goal is to get people in and get them comfortable in this space,” Lewis said.

Koka Booth is not yet looking beyond a slate of local and regional talent and smaller events, Lewis says. WakeMed Movies by Moonlight will screen films through April and May; the Josh Cellars Jazz Series will also make a return in the first week of April. In June, the North Carolina Symphony will begin performing again.

Larger events, like national artists and its usual festivals, are not out of the discussion at Koka Booth, but will not be a possibility until later. Those events could be scheduled later this summer on a concert by concert basis, if restrictions continue to ease and it is safe to gather in larger groups again.

“We’re starting with the movies; we’re going to start with the jazz series,” Lewis said. “And then we’re going to add capacity and bigger tech and production shows come a little bit later in the summer.”

For tickets, information and future events, visit boothamphitheatre.com.

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