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Make Music Black Hills

Make Music Black Hills will return on June 21, with musicians performing at Mount Rushmore National Memorial in addition its other usual venues. 

It's time to make some music.

Make Music Black Hills will return on June 21, with musicians performing at Mount Rushmore National Memorial in addition its other usual venues throughout the day. 

GiGi Lage, executive director of the Allied Arts Fund, said in news release that the Make Music event started in Rapid City in 2016 at three venues: Main Street Square, Memorial Park and the Rapid City Library. In 2017, that grew to 15 venues and over 200 performances.

This year, the addition of Mount Rushmore as a performance place has garnered national exposure, with mentions of the event in Rolling Stone and Billboard magazines recently.

“Hosting Make Music Black Hills at Mount Rushmore is an opportunity to put the Black Hills on the International map for Art’s events," Gigi Lage, executive director of the Allied Arts Fund, said in news release. 

And Mount Rushmore won't be the only new venue: Lage said the event will have several spots in Hills City this year. 

"Our goal is to continue to grow Make Music across all communities in South Dakota!" she said in an email. 

Make Music Black Hills is part of a national event, Make Music Day. Each year, the movement is held on the summer solstice in more than 800 communities throughout the world, providing free music. 

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Public spaces throughout the city become stages for local musicians of all genres and abilities to perform. To register as a performer, visit matchbh.makemusicday.org/ and create a profile. The venue selected will confirm your request. It is free to participate. 

Hosted by the Allied Arts Fund, the event also provides music education opportunities. In 2017, Lage said 100 children received their own harmonica to take home, along with a free lesson. Ukulele and guitar lessons were offered at the library and Haggerty Music Works, while the Dakota Artists Guild provided free hands-on art lessons and Black Hills Dance Theater provided free dance lessons. Miss He Sapa Win from the Black Hills Pow Wow also demonstrated dance.

After Make Music, harmonicas were given to the Children's Home and songbooks donated to a local school music program, according to Lage. 

The Mount Rushmore performances are slated from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; for a complete list of venues and performances, visit www.makemusicday.org/black-hills/.

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