You’ve heard the saying “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” That phrase fits perfectly in today’s times, and in the face of current adversity, Buck Innovation Group’s President & CEO Dan Buck is up for the challenge.
“I've been blessed in my life to know a lot of people who can get things done and I'm that point person that get ideas started and then surround myself with ingenious people, and that’s been the case in this regard,” said Buck.
Buck is drawing on his 30+ years of media and non-profit experience to tackle his latest venture. For the past five years he and his ownership group have been building a remarkable World Class Sports venue in Hazelwood, in the former St. Louis Mills Mall location. The PowerPlex is the brain child of Dan and six other St. Louisans, including Bradley Beal of the NBA’s Washington Wizards, formerly a Chaminade High School Graduate.
“We truly believe that St Louis is going to become one of the biggest meccas for youth sports once the Plex opens in January 2021, but for now, we wondered what we could do during the COVID-19 crisis to stay in business, and keep folks working,” Buck added.
In mid-April, Dan’s team got together to strategize about what they could do with this huge campus to be COVID compliant while creating a social avenue for connectedness for our community.
“We wanted to get people back to a sense of normalcy, and also do something for the 2020 graduates who’ve had their entire senior year activities cancelled,” said Buck. “So, we came up with the concept of Drive-In St Louis for virtual Graduations, and a Concert and Movie Series,” Buck added.
Every night for a very reasonable price, 450 cars park in front of 5 Large LED Screens, each taking up two spaces for social distancing purposes to watch live music on stage, followed by a movie.
“There's no $10 beers or stadium or concert pricing. If you bring four people in a car, you get a concert and a movie for just ten bucks a head,” said Buck.
“Everyone’s is just so grateful to be able to get out and socialize again, see family and get with friends they haven’t seen in months and have fun in a safe, respectful way,” said Buck. “At the same time we’re employing a hundred folks a night, including several appreciative out of work musicians.” continued Buck.
Buck says they’ve had near sellouts almost every night, and for that very reason they’ve extended the concert lineup through July 4th.
"It's a second to none experience, so we're just grateful that we’re able to provide this during a tough time, and give people an opportunity to start that social and emotional healing," Buck said.
For more information, visit driveinstl.com.