By Daniel Chesser
Summertime has started swinging again as Opelika Parks and Recreation kicked off this year’s Summer Swing Concert Series with the Lee-Scott Academy Jazz Ensemble this past Tuesday at Opelika Municipal Park.
This year’s 14-week concert series will take place every Tuesday night at 7 p.m. in Municipal Park, offering a variety of musical entertainment including gospel, jazz, R&B, oldies, country, folk and Big Band Swing. All concerts are free to the public.
“Come out early,” said Laura Leigh Chesser, public relations and special programs coordinator for Opelika Parks and Recreation. “Bring the whole family, a blanket or lawn chair and relax on the bank of Rocky Brook Creek for an evening of fun, fellowship and relaxation.”
This year folks can look forward to a familiar line-up of local artists, including the Opelika High School Bands, Martha’s Trouble, Adam Hood, Crossroads, Muse, Fred Jones and the James Brown Trio and of course, Route 66. Conner Lorre, Neil Diamond tribute artists, and Bill J. Brooks, Elvis tribute artist, will also be traveling to Opelika to grace the Summer Swing Band Stand again this year.
“This is an event for the whole family,” Chesser said. “The music is catered to all ages, and it is the perfect way to spend a relaxing evening.”
The Opelika Band Boosters will be selling their famous Summer Swing hotdogs and hamburgers beginning at 6:15 p.m. each Tuesday night, and Charter Bank of Opelika will be handing out complimentary lemonade to all in attendance. The Rocky Brook Rocket will be on the tracks all summer long, giving free train rides prior to the concerts, beginning at 6:15 p.m. each Tuesday night.
Noon Tunes is also back this month, offering free lunchtime concerts every Wednesday in May. These concerts will be held at Opelika’s Courthouse Square from noon to 1 p.m., May 7-28.
Patrons are encouraged to bring a brown bag lunch or pick up one from a local vendor to enjoy during the concert.
“This year the Irish Bred Pub and Sweet Malissa’s will be on the square to provide lunches to all those in attendance,” Chesser said. “We are so thankful for them and Opelika Mainstreet for helping to make our event such a success.”
This year Noon Tunes will feature Larcus “Silky Tone” Fuller, Strawberry Whine, Muse and Martha’s Trouble.