FORT WORTH — It’s time to get your tube on — Rockin’ the River, the summerlong concert series at Panther Island Pavilion, will be back this month with more fireworks and an indoor venue.The free concerts are played for inner-tube riders from a waterfront stage, but landlubbers can park their lawn chairs on the banks of the Trinity River to hear the music every Thursday night from June 5 to Aug. 7. Parking is also free at 395 Purcey St. Besides the usual food and alcohol vendors, the Trinity River Vision Authority, which puts on the series, is adding fireworks after every concert this year. “For the sake of the event, we are always trying to make it better. … One of the cool things people really liked from last year is at two specific times we had fireworks,” authority spokesman Matt Oliver said.There’s also a new indoor venue, The Shack at Panther Island Pavilion, so the concerts can go on rain or shine. One was canceled last year because of high winds, Oliver said. The group is also adding a mechanical bull for rivergoers to try out. “Rockin’ the River is just the vibe for Panther Island, for the whole development, that we want. It is people not just being near the river, they are in it. They are fully embracing it,” Oliver said.He said that 1,700 to 2,000 people attended each night last year and that he expects the number to grow. The skinny Concertgoers can bring their own tubes, kayaks, rafts or anything else that floats, as long as it’s not motorized. Coolers and outside food or beverages are not allowed. Anyone who breaks the food and beverage rule will be asked to leave, according to the website. Beer and soda will cost $3, and Mike’s Hard Lemonade frozen margaritas are $6. Food from Salsa Limon will be available. Tube rentals will be $6, pedal boat rentals will be $21, and kayaks, canoes and paddle boards will also be available for rent. The gates will open at 4:30 p.m., and the first band will start at 6:45. The fireworks show will start about 9:30 p.m. The hashtag #TubetheTrinity is being promoted, and more information is available at www.rockintheriverfw.com. Fort Worth’s Fourth A free Independence Day celebration, also hosted by the Trinity River Vision Authority, will follow the July 3 Rockin’ the River concert.The gates will open at 2 p.m. to several free events, including live music, flyboard and Jet Ski shows, tubing, pony rides, miniature golf, a levee slide, train rides, bounce houses, a water slide and face-painting. New this year, the waterboarders will perform tricks on water-fueled jet packs. The cover band Party Machine will hit the stage at 6 p.m. and Larry g(EE) will follow at 8. Fireworks will start about 10. “We’ve built up quite a reputation over the past two years for having the best fireworks show in North Texas,” J.D. Granger, the authority’s executive director, said in a statement. “We’re dedicated to upholding the reputation. We have quite a few tricks up our sleeve this year and can guarantee the crowds will not be disappointed. And, of course, we will have our signature firebombs that always shock and awe the crowd.” For more information, visit www.fortworthsfourth.com.
Caty Hirst, 817-390-7984 Twitter: @catyhirst