FREE Summer Concerts

FREE is such a great word, and free music concerts have been a staple of our summers since we were newlyweds in the 70’s in Cincinnati – back then we made the rounds of French Park, Eden Park, Sharon Woods. Up here on the North Coast there are lots of free summer concert offerings. Our city, Mentor, has biweekly concerts at the Civic Center amphitheater in June and July. The next town to the west, Willoughby, has a summer concert series in the gazebo at Wes Point Park every Thursday. Seems like every town around here has some free music every summer. The weather didn’t cooperate so well early in the summer, but lately it’s been perfect – moderate temperatures, blue skies, soft breezes. So far, we have been entertained by:

Denny Carleton...

Denny Carleton...

... and Friends

... and Friends

Wes Point Park Gazebo, Willoughby, OH

Wes Point Park Gazebo, Willoughby, OH

This was a eclectic mix of original music written by Denny Carleton himself, including folk, jazz, pop, rock and comedy. He even wrote a song about the carp at Linesville Spillway (where the ducks walk on the fish, click here for a photo, it’s a must see!). His backup musicians were really good. It was a blustery mid-June evening in Willoughby, threatening rain, but it held off until the music was done.

 

Next we attended the Painesville Party in the Park (see my Time Bandit story). We were only there on Friday night but next year we want to go back a couple of times – the music is non-stop for 3 days.. The night we were there we got to hear:

Andy's Last Band

Andy's Last Band

They are a “passion driven” classic rock band.  You can visit their website here.  They play all around town so we hope to hear them again.

A couple of weeks ago, we went to the Mentor concert series to hear:

Brigid's Cross

Brigid's Cross

Their concerts have been described as “watching the Chieftans and the Grateful Dead at a family reunion” and I have to agree. They performed a mix of Irish rock, folk, pop and comedy. A very entertaining concert – they play once a month at a local watering hole, The Hooley House, and at various venues around town, the USA and the world. Paul Baker, the violin/fiddle player could play every style of music, Peggy (keyboards and percussion) even played the Bodhrán – usually you see big burly guys playing this Irish drum.  They were so fun; if they come your way you should be sure to go hear them.  Their web site:  Brigid’s Cross

Andy smiling!  He likes the music

Andy smiling! He likes the music

 

 

 

 

And so are we!

And so do we!

 

This past Tuesday found us again at the Civic Center to hear:

The Stone Pony Band

The Stone Pony Band

WOW! This was a great concert. The front man, Kelly Derrick, really got the crowd involved. They obviously have a big following by the crowd response (their website). They are a Bruce Springsteen cover band, and also played a lot of Southside Johnny and John Mayer. On this night, they were joined by the North Coast Horns, who are part of another group called Pieces of Eight. At one point, they wandered through the crowd as they played. Andy was dancing in his seat but he finally couldn’t stand it any longer – he burst out of his chair and headed to the front of the stage to boogey!

 

Andy getting DOWN!

Andy getting DOWN!

This doesn’t include all the incidental music we’ve enjoyed at flea markets, street sales, etc.

This has become a family affair for us. At first, Andy didn’t want to go with us, but he finally broke down and found out that Mom and Dad go to some pretty cool concerts! This is not the end, the Willoughby Concert Series continues thru September, we look forward to hearing The Girls, Abbey Rodeo, and Cats on Holiday, there is a patriotic concert in Mentor next week, and in the fall Better in Mentor days has all kinds of music on different stages. We’ll be rockin’ until the leaves turn red!

As the sun sets behind the city building - ahhhhhhhhh summer!

As the sun sets behind the city building - ahhhhhhhhh summer!

Want to see more concert photos?  Click here then open Brigids Cross and Stone Pony Band.

SO, have you been to any FREE concerts this summer? Share your experience…..

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About SallyK

A little blog about the ordinary and not so ordinary things our family does, places we travel, things we see. Like travel, cooking, family stories, book reviews, music? You will find it all here - comments welcome!
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