Shenandoah Pizza owners branch out into concert promotion

Edited by Chris Graham

When Shenandoah Pizza owners Cheryl and John Huggins started following one of their favorite bands the Allman Brothers around from concert-to-concert years ago, they never imagined that a few years hence they would be hosting musicians associated with the band in their very own concert series.

“We just loved that music scene and wanted to be a part of it all back then,” said John Huggins. “Now we want to bring some of that same excitement and enjoyment to the local music scene.”

The Bruce Katz Band will headline the Shenandoah Summer Blues Fest Aug. 21 at the Steve B. Dod Amphitheater located at the Frontier Culture Museum in Staunton. Katz has toured with the Allman Brothers and still plays with Gregg Allman regularly, who says about Bruce, “He can play jazz, blues, Bach, anything. Man, he’s a heavy!”

A deep well of local blues musicians will round out the schedule, with a variety of food, drink, vendors and other special activities on tap.

Tickets are $25 advance/$30 at the gate, and more information and the line-up of bands can be viewed at

Tickets can be purchased at Shenandoah Pizza, Frontier Culture Museum or online.

The event will mark the third in a series of festivals Cheryl and John have brought to the Staunton-Augusta area this year on top of the weekly musical performances the couple host in their popular pizza restaurant on Beverley Street in Staunton. The Shenandoah Valley Blues Festival kicked off the concert series in April with Bob Margolin and a line-up of accomplished local musicians in an all-day blues festival at Oak Grove Theater in Verona. The second is the Taste of Jazz Music Festival, a free event on June 27 from 4-9 p.m. in downtown Staunton that is co-sponsored by the Staunton Downtown Development Association and Bike Virginia and boasts a sampling of local jazz musicians.

Taste of Jazz is free and open to the public and the lineup is posted on

“Cheryl and I believe strongly that the arts contribute to the vitality of a community and that’s why we want to support the arts in any way we can. This concert series is a way to bring touring and local performers together in new and exciting combinations,” John Huggins said. “The sky’s the limit if fans keep supporting this kind of event. There’s a lot of great music to be heard in the Valley.”

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