Camden County Summer Concert Series kicks off June 6

The signature summer program features a mix bag of performers through Aug.

By: GRACE MAIORANO

Continuing a more than 25-year tradition, the ambience of a South Jersey summer will soon be set to the sounds of string bands, Broadway and more.

Camden County is kicking off its annual summer concert series on June 6. The free outdoor performances feature the music of many genres from talent discovered around the area.

From rising stars to Grammy Award-nominated artists, the lineup will serve as the soundtrack of the summer.

The genesis behind the shows dates back nearly a quarter century.

“The idea was to provide affordable entertainment and recreation for residents,” said Freeholder Jeff Nash, who has been serving Camden County since the program’s inception. “The concert series was a component of that.”

Initially, performances were limited to the banks of the Cooper River, but over the years, the extravaganza evolved to other quarters to reach more residents.

“We want to cover the four corners of Camden County … bottom line is — it’s very important that every Camden County resident has the opportunity to enjoy the concert series,” Nash said.

The three-month spectacle kicks off June 6 featuring artists Liza Anne with Jason McGovern as part of the Sundown Music Series at Haddon Lake Park in Haddon Heights.

While Haddon Heights is home to the sundown shows, other staging includes the Sunset Jazz Series at Wiggins Waterfront Park in Camden City, Cooper River Twilight Concert Series in Pennsauken and the South County Music Series at Lindenwold Park and the New Brooklyn Park in Winslow Township.

Nash says Winslow Township is the latest edition to the series and sees a significant turnout each year — a reflection of the growing community.

Overall, the series draws tens of thousands of people from across the Delaware Valley, which could be attributed to the assortment of shows. Nash says the jazz series alone experiences 5,000 attendees on any given evening.

“It’s important to have different genres because of the variety of tastes of residents,” Nash said.

Noteworthy performances this year include multi-Grammy-winning pioneer of jazz fusion Stanley Clark, Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Raúl Midón and Grammy-nominated blues and folk singer-songwriter Ruthie Foster.

On Independence Day, “Two Tickets to Paradise” ace Eddie Money, as well as Rock and Roll Hall of Famers The Spinners, will take the stage at the Camden County Freedom Festival at Wiggins Waterfront Park, which will be followed by a fireworks spectacular over the Delaware River.

And although performance managers do not check identification to verify Camden County residences before each show, bringing in out of towners each summer has proven to have a positive impact on the local economy.

“People enjoy an affordable night not far from home that is great entertainment,” Nash said. “ So, it doesn’t really get better than that.”

Full list of series:

Sunset Jazz Series at Wiggins Waterfront Park

At the foot of MLK Boulevard, Camden City

All concerts start at 8 p.m.

June 11 — Red Baraat

June 25 — Stanley Clarke

July 16 — The James Hunter Six

Aug. 6 — Raul Midón

Aug. 13 — Special EFX featuring Chieli Minucci, Lao Tizer and Elliott Yamin

Aug.27 — Grace Kelly

Cooper River Twilight Concert Series

North Park Drive, Pennsauken

All concerts start at 8 p.m.

June 14 — South Philadelphia String Band

June 28 — Tusk (top Fleetwood Mac tribute band)

July 19 — Broadway, Opera and Beyond

Aug. 2 — Atlanta Rhythm Section

Aug. 16 — Point Blank

Aug.30 — Darlene Love

Sundown Music Series at Haddon Lake Park

13th Avenue, Park Drive and Prospect Boulevard, Haddon Heights

All concerts start at 7:30 p.m.

June 6 — Liza Anne with Jason McGovern

June 20 — Orleans with Kevin Burke

July 11 — Chuck Prophet & The Mission Express with Milton

July 25 — Ruthie Foster with Frank Brown

Aug. 1 — Dave Hause & The Mermaid with April Mae & Catfish

Aug. 15 — The National Reserve with Michelle Nagy

South County Music Series

Winslow Township — New Brooklyn Park

Erial-New Brooklyn Road, Sicklerville

All concerts begin at 7 p.m.

June 19 — Bootsie Barnes & Larry McKenna Jazz Sextet

July 21 — Urban Guerrilla Orchestra

Aug. 21 — Billy Hector Blues Band

Lindenwold Park

1000 United States Avenue, Lindenwold

All concerts begin at 8 p.m.

June 22 — Edgardo Cintron & The Inca Band Tribute to Santana

Aug. 3 — Ladies of Rock & Soul

Aug. 24 — Danny V’s 52nd Street Band Tribute to Billy Joel

For more information, visit CamdenCounty.com.