From left, Lisa Davis, CJ Davis, 2, and Colin Davis. "In comparison to Wolf Trap, it's easy getting in and out. And it's free," said Lisa Davis of Reston.
Photo by Mercia Hobson/The Connection
For residents of the Town of Vienna and surrounding communities, summertime fun takes off every Friday evening, 6:30 p.m. on the Town Green, 144 Maple Avenue East, when Vienna Parks and Recreation and its sponsors present their Summer on the Green Concert Series.
On Friday night, June 30, families and friends prepared for the fifth out of the thirteen weekly performances. Concertgoers anxiously awaited the perfect genre of music to get them in the mood for the upcoming 4th of July celebration - spirited sounds of Americana performed by Shenandoah Run, a folk ensemble from the Washington D.C. area.
Well before the concert began, families and friends gathered on the Town Green. They laid out blankets and set up lawn chairs covering the slight slope downwards toward the pavilion. The natural u-shaped setting, mostly shady and in harmony with its surroundings, formed a mini amphitheater with the wooden pavilion centered below. Every seat was a good seat.
CONCERTGOERS opened picnic baskets and coolers. While the older children ran to the fringes of the Green and played Frisbee before the concert began, the little ones kept close to their parents.
Jim Thorne from Arlington is a classical guitar and jazz flute player for Shenandoah Run. When asked what he thought about the gathered crowd he said, "It feels like family here … very intimate. It's nice to see it fill up across the green."
Bob Melissinos is the founder of Shenandoah Run. He commented about differences he noted in the crowd and the venue now, compared to when the ensemble first performed there in 2013. "This is our fifth time at Concert on the Green," Melissinos said. "The size of the crowd is different, it's larger [now than before], and there is the Pavilion."
For arriving concertgoers not only was the event free and open the public but there was plenty of free parking on the street, in the lot across from the Historic Freeman Store and Museum located at 131 Church Street NE and in the lot adjacent to the W&OD Trail. No alcoholic beverages were permitted though, and the town recommended leaving pets at home. Although food and beverage service was not available, Whole Foods was across the street, and there were plenty of nearby restaurants for take out.
According to the town website, up next on the 2017 Concert Line Up scheduled for Friday, July 7, is the Richard Walton Group. The Maryland Music Awards nominated them Best Jazz Artist, and they received a WAMMIE nomination for Best Jazz Recording for their new studio CD, “Under The Current.”
The Friday Night 6:30 p.m. Line Up continues with July 14- Nitehawks Swing Band; sponsored by the Michael Dandreea Group at Morgan Stanley; July 21- Chillin' On the Church, Special Event, Harlen Simple-Rock/Funk/Blues; and July 28-Wayne Tymanick Quartet-Jazz/Dixieland. Aug. 4- US Navy Sea Chanters-Choral; Aug. 11- The Rockits- Classical Rock; and August 18- Chillin' on Church Street, Special Event, Mudlark-Rock and Blues. The series wraps up its 2017 season with the Sept. 15 Chillin' on Church Street, Special Event, Chump Change-Classic Rock.
After the evening performance, Vince Krevinas of Chantilly summed up the concert best, "Great performance. Perfect sound. Great set list. Ten plus on a scale of one to ten. It is the Best Show all summer.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION about Vienna Summer on the Green Concert Series, visit viennava.gov or call 703-255-6300.