Band's fans flock to SPAC for Downtown Alive concert

Threat of rain forced DID's free concert indoors

READING, Pa. - A Flock of Seagulls had to fly inside during their visit to Reading after the '80s group's free Downtown Alive concert was moved to the Santander Performing Arts Center.

"The arena is out because it's already set up for the Jehovah's Witnesses that's coming in this weekend," said Charles Broad, executive director of the Reading Downtown Improvement District, "so we couldn't go there, but they graciously made the performing arts center available to us."

The possibility of severe weather forced the Downtown Improvement District to move a concert inside for the first time since the free concert series began five years ago. Parking was still free in the Poplar and Walnut streets garage. No food trucks were outside, but the venue offered food and drinks for sale.

"This is a popular group that's playing," said Broad. "It's free, and now we're indoors and there's air conditioning. Nobody's going to be concerned about humid conditions outside."

Some fans lined up outside wished for food trucks, but they said they'll take a trade-off.

"I have their ticket from back in the day," said one A Flock of Seagulls fan from Blandon. "I was hoping it would be outside because of the weather but... I'd rather take the air conditioning."

"It's good that they're having it still," said another fan. "At least somebody's willing to let them have it for free in here."

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