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Face the music: LI's last free outdoor concerts

Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks perform at Glen

Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks perform at Glen Cove's Downtown Sounds Summer Concert Series in the Village Square. (August 6, 2010) Credit: Photo by Liz Malone

The sun's about to set on Long Island's free outdoor concert season, but not before a few last blasts for folks who like to spread blankets in the grass and soak up those summer sounds.

A free summer concert can be a nostalgic night out, frequent concertgoers say.

Gail Gardner, 56, of West Babylon, saw the real Marshall Tucker Band this summer as well as Beatles and Eagles tribute bands at Tanner Park in Copiague. That series wound up with a genuine Herman's Hermits concert, which she enjoyed from a beach chair with her husband and four friends.

"Everybody was singing along," she says. "I felt like a teenager again."

The last dance of summer moves to jazz, funk, calypso, Irish fiddle and Beatles' hits, in parks and band shells from Glen Cove to Montauk.

Northport's Summerfest


WHEN | WHERE 8 p.m. Thursday, Robert Krueger Bandshell, Village Park, Northport

THE BAND The Liverpool Shuffle

THE GENRE Beatles - of course.

THE SCENE Concertgoers set up lawn chairs in front of a gazebo, which borders the scenic harbor and its sailboats. Pick up snacks on Main Street.

INFO 631-261-7502

Port Jefferson Harborside Concert Series


WHEN | WHERE 8 p.m. Thursday, Port Jefferson ferry dock

THE BAND Funk Filharmonic, with guest Lina Koutrakos.

THE GENRE Energetic Latin, soul and jazz

THE SCENE Lively waterfront with many restaurants and pubs.

INFO 631-802-2160,

Downtown Sounds


WHEN | WHERE 7:30 p.m. Friday at Glen Cove's village square.

THE BAND Marvin Floyd & Friends

THE GENRE Smooth jazz, funk and R&B.

THE SCENE Summer in the city. Limited seating, so concertgoers are advised to bring their own lawn chair. Free parking is available at municipal garages on Brewster and Pulaski streets. Several restaurants offer $15 "music box" to-go dinner specials.

INFO 516-759-6970,

Vivian and the Merrymakers Times 3


WHEN | WHERE 6:30 p.m. Sept. 1 at Agawam Park, Southampton

THE GENRE Calypso/steel band

THE SCENE End-of-summer-concerts by this Sag Harbor-based Caribbean steel band have become an East End tradition. "Everybody loves them," says Kirsten Lonnie, executive director of the Southampton Cultural Center. Hamptons summer people spread their blankets and set up their lawn chairs on the big park lawn in downtown Southampton. They're expecting "a big summer crowd" of up to 2,000 people to see the group close out Southampton's season.

INFO 631-287-4377,

GOOD TO KNOW The band also plays at 7:30 p.m. this Thursday at Sag Harbor Marine Park and 6 p.m. Monday at Montauk Village Green.

Ward Melville Heritage Organization's Sunday Summer concerts


WHEN | WHERE 7 p.m. Sunday, in front of the Stony Brook post office

THE BAND Fiddler's Green Band

THE GENRE Traditional Irish and nautical music.

THE SCENE Folks wind down the weekend at this Sunday afternoon series, hosted at the village green.

INFO 631-751-2244,

Reader pick


SUBMITTED BY Valerie Paris, of Wantagh

Paris was among several Newsday readers who recommends the Islip Arts Council's free summer concerts, which are held outdoors at Rotary Park and under the trees at Bayard Cutting Arboretum, where Paris says, "you could not ask for a more beautiful setting."

NEXT UP Easy Street (Southern rock) 2 p.m. Sunday at Bayard Cutting Arboretum; and New York's Most Dangerous Big Band, 7 p.m. Sept. 1 at Rotary Park, Sayville.

INFO 631-224-5420,

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