Country musician, Tenino graduate to perform at 'Party on the Prairie' event

Drone show to follow the conclusion of Prairie Days inaugural concert


Prairie Days 2024 will be capped off with the first-ever “Party on the Prairie” concert, and the City of Yelm’s Parks and Recreation department is hopeful to conclude the annual celebration with a bang. 

Line Roy, Yelm’s communications and recreation coordinator, said the inaugural “Party on the Prairie’’ concert will celebrate Yelm’s centennial. It will kick off at 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 22, at Yelm City Park. The event will feature country music artist and songwriter Adam Craig as the headliner. The Hogue and Moore Band will open for Craig at the free concert. 

“Adam is a local legend and has an awesome following right here in our area. I think since he’s from this region, it really helps highlight what we’re celebrating with the centennial event. It’s cool to honor and bring in somebody who grew up right here and saw us as we were growing and gets to be a part of this celebration, too,” Roy said. “Adam is going to do an awesome show for us. He promised a night of awesome entertainment. After he’s done performing, we have another big treat for the residents and those who show up. We’ll be doing a drone show. It’s like a firework show but better.” 

Craig, a former Tenino High School baseball player, has co-penned numerous songs, including Parmalee’s “Close Your Eyes,” Dustin Lynch’s “World to Me,” Jason Aldean’s “Church Pew or Bar Stool” and “Fast Lanes,” Love and Theft’s “Whiskey on my Breath” and Montgomery Gentry’s “Folks Like Us.” 

He is currently signed to Stoney Creek Records and previously released his self-titled debut EP and debut single “Just a Phase,” which climbed into country music’s top 40 list. On the Spotify music streaming app, Craig has over 19 million streams of his song “Just a Phase” and nearly 8.5 million streams of his track “Why Can’t She.” 

“I think residents are in for a heck of a good time, and they’re going to be in for a real treat,” Roy said. “In addition to our usual Prairie Days activities that will go on during the day, once those activities end at 3 p.m., we’re going to do a real quick park turnaround and really flip it from being super-family focused into a big celebration.”

Roy said the event will feature several food vendors and a beer garden, and added the City went through a “long process” when selecting an artist to perform at the Party of the Prairie event. 

“We had to look at a lot of different factors, including their availability. We weren’t doing this a year, two years in advance, and people’s calendars fill up quickly,” Roy said.  “Someone threw Adam’s name out, and it was almost a response of ‘well, obviously we’ll go with that artist. Where were we?” Then it was just getting in touch with him and working out the details. We were able to connect with him directly.”

Prior to the concert beginning, Roy said the City will welcome the Nisqually Indian Tribe to the stage for a stage blessing and naming ceremony. 

“I think that’s so important, too. I don’t want that to be overshadowed by everything else,” Roy said. “We’re celebrating our history, and so much of our history, the Nisqually Tribe played a part in. Getting to invite them to bless our stage and to help celebrate that opening, and the 100-year celebration, is pretty cool.

“This whole day is going to be so much fun. I hope that our residents will take advantage of this event and celebrate with us,” Roy continued. “I love getting to be able to be part of transitioning this event into something that offers a little more for more people. I would love to see us continue with our Party on the Prairie celebration every year. We’ll have the stuff for the kids and families earlier in the day before transitioning into something more for the adults in the evening. Of course, we’ll follow up with mushball on Sunday for the athletes. There’s something for everyone.” 

Yelm City Park is located at 115 Mosman Ave. SE, or a brisk walk away from where the Prairie Days Parade will occur on East Yelm Avenue.