In the region and beyond, it’s the time of year for outdoor entertainment. Summer is the perfect time to pack a picnic and enjoy live music, fireworks, and carnival rides, or do all of the above. Hillsboro Summerfest takes place at Grimes Field beginning today and running through this Sunday, July 10. An impressive fireworks display and midway entertainment are just two of the many events on the schedule.
Summerfest was supposed to return in 2020 after three decades as Hillsboro Balloon Festival, but it was canceled because of the pandemic and will not be held again this year. The inaugural Summerfest was held in 2017. “It was a fantastic success,” said event co-chair and creative director Katherine Charrette. A record-breaking audience of over 8,000 people attended, she said, making it the largest in almost a decade.
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A larger fireworks display and additional kid-friendly activities and games are planned for this year. The festival’s volunteer firefighters, who have previously held a muster, will this year compete in an obstacle course. This year’s festival will feature performances by hard rock band Superbug as well as Decatur Creek, a singer-songwriter trio, and country band Backyard Swagger. Speaking of live music, Depot Park in downtown Peterborough will host a complete summer of free outdoor concerts beginning this weekend.
Brandy, seven-piece jazz, Motown, R&B, and rock band, will launch the 10th annual series of seven free concerts this Friday, July 8th, with a performance. On July 15, Massive Groove Band, which includes a horn section, will perform. Everywhere throughout the world, the band performs its wide range of musical styles.
Certain Tremble will be led by Mayer and Susan Statham, a husband-and-wife duo. It also includes percussion, guitar, bass, and piano, with a wide repertoire that spans several decades and various genres. Favorite restaurants in the area The Tom Foolery Band, a nine-piece funk and jazz band, performs on July 29. On August 5th, Paul Klemperer and his band will be performing. Jazz, R&B, and his own compositions make up Klemperer’s set list, which he has performed in the series for many years.
First-time viewers The Great American Songbook will be performed by the New England Swing, Gypsy, and Hot Jazz Ensemble Hot Club of New England on August 12 and Los Sugar Kings will return on August 19 to present classic son Cubano, rumba-Flamenca, and salsa as well as their own unique music.
Pelagia Vincent, the series creator, and producer, remarked, “We deliver something that isn’t necessarily a known entity.” “We want audiences to hear new sounds, new bands, and new genres from around New England,” the organizers say on their website. In spite of the pandemic, the series, which Vincent refers to as “The Tanglewood of Peterborough,” drew an audience of 300 to 500 people each time.
Vincent encourages people to visit Peterborough early and take advantage of the city’s restaurants, shopping, and art. She recommends taking a blanket or yard chair and a picnic to a concert. “Come on, let’s make a day of it,” she said. A footbridge connects the town’s new parking lot across the river to the park.
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“You can hear that great music playing once you park at the Riverwalk or cross the bridge,” remarked Vincent. “The intersection of the Contoocook and Nubanusit Rivers, where jazz, blues, and rock meet, is such a special part of the summer.” “It’s all magical,” the narrator says. This Friday, July 8, is the start of Depot Park’s music series, which will run through Aug. 19. From 6 to 7:30 p.m., all concerts are held. Attendees are not charged. Bring a lawn chair or blanket, a picnic, and any leashed pet if you’d like. In the case of inclement weather, a new date will be set. As of today, today is the first day of Hillsboro Summerfest at Grimes Field, which will run until Sunday, July 10th. Parking is $10 per carload and is not included in the admission price.
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