Multiple free concerts covering a wide range of genres are planned for various venues throughout the summer. From popular downtown hot spots to shady suburban standbys, live outdoor music options are plentiful.
The Grand Rapids Art Museum’s 14th annual free summer concert series GRAM on the Green with WYCE 88.1 FM will take place Thursday evenings, beginning July 20. The series brings four evenings of performances by local and regional musical acts to downtown Grand Rapids.
“The Grand Rapids Art Museum is thrilled to bring another season of free summer concerts to downtown Grand Rapids in partnership with WYCE 88.1 FM,” commented GRAM Director of Communications Elizabeth Payne. “GRAM on the Green is part of our ongoing commitment to present accessible and engaging art experiences for our community, and we look forward to another year of celebrating art and music downtown.”
Guests of all ages are invited to relax on the Museum’s outdoor terrace and enjoy free live music, food trucks, a cash bar, and hands-on art activities. Admission to the Museum is also free during GRAM on the Green as part of Meijer Free Thursday Nights. Concert goers are invited inside the Museum to explore the exhibitions on view during the summer months, including Message from Our Planet: Digital Art from the Thoma Collection, Ellsworth Kelly & Jack Youngerman: Surrounding Shapes, and rotating works from GRAM’s collection on all three floors of the Museum.
“This year’s lineup features a mix of Michigan artists making waves in the community,” said WYCE Music Director and series curator Chris Cranick. “Whether it’s Latin groove, soul, forward-thinking country or modern indie rock, we’re elated to present the diverse lineup of talent this year. Each act is sure to get everyone on their feet dancing. We look forward to connecting with the community at the shows this summer.”
On July 20, La Furia Del Ritmo will delight the crowd with Latin/world music. Sarena Rae takes the stage with soulful blues and jazz July 27. The Bootstrap Boys bring a blend of country, Americana & folk to the scene on August 3. And on August 10, five piece guitar-driven indie-rock band Pretoria takes the stage.
The Grand Rapids Symphony is inviting people to savor the summer through live music with two free concerts. On Friday, July 15, starting at 6:30 p.m., the GRS will perform a free neighborhood concert at Sullivan (aka Valley) Field, 650 Valley Ave. NW.
Duo Shen and the orchestra will offer a free preview of our 2023-2024 concert lineup. The ballpark offers a perfect summer setting for an evening of music. Patrons are welcome to bring a picnic or purchase food and drinks onsite. There will also be several pre-concert musical activities, including an instrument discovery– where children can hold and try out different instruments in the orchestra, and a music-related craft. For more information, visit the GRS website.
Another free GRS concert is set to take place at Thornapple Plaza in Hastings at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 21.
Beacon Hill at Eastgate, 1919 Boston St SE, Grand Rapids is inviting community members of all ages to enjoy a lineup of local musicians and unique meals during its Concerts on the Green series. The concerts begin at 7 p.m. on the second Wednesday of the month June through September on the front lawn.
“Year after year, we are overjoyed to offer the Concerts on the Green series to our residents, their loved ones and members of the community,” said Beacon Hill Foundation Director Andi Allen. “This series is just one of the ways we enrich the lives of our residents and offer a welcoming space for community members. We can’t wait to gather again this summer to enjoy nights full of exceptional music, delectable meals and appreciation for our neighbors.”
This year’s lineup features Judy Harrison and the ReBooted Band performing original music, classic rock and country favorites on July 12; Edye Evans Hyde performing a blend of pop, jazz and blues on August 9; Eli Roe performing folk-inspired renditions and Celtic classics on Sept. 13.
The Traveling Plate, a dedicated Beacon Hills food truck, will offer a menu of carefully curated meals and refreshments using fresh ingredients from Beacon Hill’s half-acre community garden. Executive Chef Luke Theaker has designed a rotating menu of handpicked meals prepared by the community’s chefs so that attendees are sure to find something new to enjoy during each concert.
“As a retirement community, we are proud to operate a unique food truck that offers residents and community members a culinary destination for delightful dishes made using local ingredients,” Theaker said. Concertgoers are encouraged to bring a blanket or lawn chair and are welcome to pack a picnic to enjoy during the show. Limited on-site parking is available; carpooling is encouraged.