Photography by Dan Austin

When planning your next home soirée, ditch the classic dinner party. Join us as we think outside the box and transform the Czerneks’ mid-century remodel into a house concert.

The Art of Hosting

With a recent remodel, the floor-to-ceiling windows, and ideal location off Lake Hollingsworth, it’s not hard to imagine why Tim and Julie Czerneks’ first home caught their attention. The simple and modern exterior of their home matched both of their personal styles. But what really sold the home for these two was the layout. “We bought our home because of the open space,” Julie says. The Czerneks love to host, and this open floor plan gave them the vision to curate a space for hosting large parties and small, intimate gatherings alike.

Most would claim that proper hosting is an art. Reimagining your space for an inventive gathering can be one of the greatest joys of being a homeowner. However, thinking outside the typical forms of entertaining may oftentimes feel limiting — especially if your home has capacity restraints. Have you ever considered what your home might look like outside of the standard cocktail hours and dinner parties?

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For The Lakelander’s first-ever SOUNDCHECK music experience, we sure did. In order to properly demonstrate how to creatively reinvent your space for a not-so-typical home gathering, we decided to give you an example of how to turn your living room into the perfect venue for a house concert. House concerts aren’t atypical in-and-of themselves. In fact, many artists prefer house concerts due to the natural intimacy it creates from being in such a small space. These types of events allow artists to make authentic connections with their fans and create a dynamic energy difficult to replicate in larger venues.

When done right, a house concert is a creative way to host a party and an enjoyable experience for all involved. However, we know this may be intimidating. A common misconception when planning an elaborate gathering like a house concert may be the size of the space. But we’re here to say: the details may matter more than size. It all comes down to the host’s flexibility and ability to create a multifunctional space out of their home.

There is a plethora of elements to consider when setting the right mood for a home event. One must consider finding the right balance of direct and indirect lighting, where to place the furniture, and what type of serveware to use. Occupying Tim and Julie’s home for this event was a seamless experience because they had already created a space that gave them the confidence to host. They also had vision, got creative, moved things around, and made the most of their space to create an event worth remembering — all elements that can be replicated almost anywhere with the right attention to detail.

Tim and Julie both admire minimalistic style and model this in the interior design of their home. They also add color and depth throughout their home with statement pieces like large plants. In addition, the two added specific touches that have helped transform this house to their own space. For Tim, it was all about the bar cart. For Julie, it was about personalized pieces like the “Czernek” neon sign that hangs near the same cart. The corner of their home where both pieces are located is very telling of their joint love for hosting.


“It’s the little touches that make the biggest difference.”

With a simple and modern mid-century appearance on the outside, the home’s inside replicates a similar feel. Tim and Julie wanted to accentuate the ways the architecture complemented the interior of the home by not overwhelming the inside with too much decor and allowing the natural light to shine through in every room. They also did not allow the 1,500 square feet of space to limit their capacity to host in their home. They created a multifunctional dining room and double living room where they could move major pieces of furniture around in order to accommodate a wide range of events. They are able to add chairs for dinners or move pieces out to make the home feel more spacious for larger types of parties. “We just want our home to feel welcoming,” Julie says.

The SOUNDCHECK house concert was a different event for the Czerneks to assemble. But they loved the challenge, and seeing their home with the furniture moved around and the house packed out gave them a new perspective on how to accommodate for future parties.

Introducing Soundcheck

The Lakelander’s inaugural SOUNDCHECK event

SOUNDCHECK is a newly branded music section of The Lakelander that will focus on highlighting the local sounds of our community. In print, this may look like featuring past events like this issue’s event or profiles on up-and-coming artists. In digital, this may look like music reviews, behind-the-scenes videos and photos from inside the studio, or exclusive interviews with local artists.

Be sure to check out the “SOUNDCHECK” section on to stay up to date on our local music scene.

The Talent

Meet Bela + Day Bit

Obviously, the talent is essential when planning a house concert. And for SOUNDCHECK’s house concert, we were able to bring in some of Lakeland’s best, rising artists.

Bela Pierce and David DePerez (Day Bit) are both Southeastern students who are also pursuing careers in music. They both have a passion for songwriting and have released songs that capture this gift. Day Bit has several singles out, but one of his most endearing pieces is his latest song “Gone,” which was performed at this SOUNDCHECK concert. Pierce has one song released titled “Free,” which she also performed this night. Each with their own individual sounds, when this duo comes together they bring a dynamic and pop-infused sound to any song they perform. Both of their styles are emotive and filled with lyrical depth, but they also have the unique ability to get listeners experiencing all the good vibes even in the midst of that.

Their music is available to stream on Spotify, Apple Music, and SoundCloud.

Video & audio production by Aaron Marsh

The Details

As the Czerneks say: “Details are key.” Tim and Julie note the importance of considering the guests’ first steps into the home. “What do they smell, hear, and see?” asks Julie. Consider everything, like “all the dishware to the seating arrangements. Add sliced fruit to the water, or, if making drinks, add garnishes on top,” she says. 



For this house concert, the Czerneks carefully considered the seating arrangement. “We moved all of our furniture to make it fit the room,” Julie says. Even bringing in furniture from other rooms created optimal seating for the night.

It’s important to think through details such as these because, “It’s the little touches that make the biggest difference,” Julie says.

Special thanks to Patio 850 for catering this SOUNDCHECK event.

Cocktail of the Evening

The Lkldr Moscow Mule


6 cans Gosling’s ginger beer

24 ounces Tito’s vodka

Juice from 6 limes

Lime wedges to garnish

(12-15 servings)


To a large pitcher, combine the vodka, ginger beer, and lime juice. Gently stir with a large spoon to mix. Fill 12-15 copper mugs or similar sized glasses with ice. Serve the mixture in each cup. Garnish with lime wedges and enjoy!