Boogie Over to These Free (or Cheap) Summer Concerts

When kids get the wiggles, they have to move and that’s why summer concerts are so great for families. No seats to sit still in or to kick in front of and nobody expects your little guys to keep quiet. So go ahead and join ’em! You know you want to and the fact that these concerts are free or virtually so, you’ll have a lot to celebrate.

photo: Nancy Tredder for PEPS


Concerts at the Locks
Most Saturday and Sunday afternoons (May through September), you can catch free summer concerts at the Ballard Locks. This summer’s lineup includes the Seattle Civic Band and several jazz orchestras and ensembles, plus a special 4th of July concert, a histortic boat parade with classic and pop music presented by clarinetists of all ages on July 9, a Horseless Carriage Car Show with music by Pacific Cascade Big Band on August 12 and Microsoft Jumpin’ Jive Orchestra on August 19. Be sure to check the online calendar for schedule changes.

Hiram M. Chittenden Locks
3015 N.W. 54th St.
Seattle, Wa 98107
Online: ballardlocks.org


Dates: Sat. & Sun., May 28–Sept. 16, 2017
Times: 2 p.m. Download the printer-friendly calendar here.
Cost: Free

BECU ZooTunes
This awesome summer concert series (and major fundraiser for Woodland Park Zoo) returns this summer with a fab lineup of artists. Pack a picnic dinner and a blanket and enjoy some great tunes with the family. View the concert lineup and purchase tickets online.

Woodland Park Zoo – North Meadow
5500 Phinney Ave. N.
Seattle, Wa 98103
Online: zoo.org/zootunes

Dates: June 20–Aug. 20, 2017
Time: 6 p.m.–8:30 p.m.
Cost: $26 and up (one child 12 & under free with each paying adult)

photo: Woodland Park Zoo – ZooTunes and Events Facebook page 

University Village Sounds of Summer Concert Series
Starting on July 8, U Village is the place to be on Wednesday nights. This all ages concert series will feature live music from bands like Eldridge Gravy & the Court Supreme, Blake Lewis, The Nowhere Men, The Paperboys, Kalimba, BowieVision and Hit Explosion as well as a beer garden, gourmet bites and plenty of fun activities in the kid’s play area.

University Village
2623 N.E. University Village St.
Seattle, Wa 98105
Online: uvillage.com/sounds-of-summer-concert-series

Dates: July 12, 19 & 26 and Aug. 2, 9, 16 & 23, 2017
Time: 7 p.m.–8:30 p.m. (doors open at 6 p.m.)
Cost: Free

Out to Lunch Summer Concert Series
This fave summer concert series returns on July 5 to various outdoor parks and venues throughout downtown Seattle. Concerts will take place every day of the work week and will feature exciting local and national acts during the lunch hour on Tuesday-Friday (Monday’s concerts are in the later afternoon). Now, you have five more excuses to hop on the bus and take the kiddos downtown!

Bonus: Garage parking with rates the same or less than street parking will be available near many of the concerts. Visit downtownseattleparking.com for more info.

Locations: Westlake Park, City Hall Plaza, Union Bank, Occidental Square, Lake Union Park, Two Union Square, Harbor Steps, Freeway Park and Hot Spot on the waterfront.
Online: downtownseattle.com/Summer

Dates: Various dates July 5–Sept. 1, 2017
Times: noon–1:30 p.m. (Mondays are 4:30 p.m–6:00 p.m.). Download a printer-friendly calendar here.
Cost: Free 

photo: Downtown Seattle Association

West Seattle Summer Concerts at Hiawatha Park
You don’t want to miss the Admiral Neighborhood Association’s free outdoor concerts now in its ninth season. The lineup has tons of hip local bands your family will love and some popular kiddie ones, too. Pack a picnic dinner and a blanket and enjoy these Thursday evening concerts starting July 20. Psst.. 2017 concert schedule deets are still being worked out. Keep an eye on their website for more info.

Hiawatha Park
2700 California Ave. S.W.
Seattle, Wa 98116
Online: admiralneighborhood.org/summer-concerts

Dates: Thursdays starting July 20, 2017 (exact dates TBD)
Time:  6:30 p.m.–8 p.m.
Cost: Free

Concerts at the Mural
What could be better than enjoying an awesome outdoor summer concert in the shadow of the Space Needle? Concerts at the Mural is a free August series (four shows in total) for all ages. Discover the best of our area’s independent music scene at these Friday night shows put on by the Seattle Center and KEXP 90.3 FM.

Seattle Center – Mural Amphitheatre
305 Harrison St.
Seattle, Wa 98109
Online: seattlecenter.com/concertsatthemural

Dates: Aug.  4, 11, 18 & 25, 2017
Time: 5:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

photo: Bumbershoot

Bumbershoot & Youngershoot 
This festival caps off summer with a Labor Day weekend filled with great music. The Seattle Center will be bumping with the fun music from the Bumbershoot festival (Flume, Weezer, Lorde, Odesza and The Roots are among the performers). There’s even a Youngershoot portion of the festival—events and music that are kid-specific and particularly family friendly.

Seattle Center
305 Harrison St.
Seattle, Wa 98109
Online: bumbershoot.com

Dates: Sept. 1-3, 2017
Time: Opens daily at 11 a.m.
Cost: $99 to $750 (7 & under Free with paying adult)

Library Shows
Who says libraries are quiet? Check out your fave library online or ask the librarian for a listing of summer concerts for kids. The King County Library System and Seattle Public Library both have great tunes lined up this summer.

photo: Kristina Moy

Eastside and Beyond

Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery Concerts, Woodinville
The outdoor concerts at Ste. Michelle are geared for adults but kids are welcome (a ticket is required for children age 3 and over, but they can still attend for free).

Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery
14111 N.E. 145th St.
Woodinville, Wa 98072
Online: ste-michelle.com/events/concertCalendar

Dates: June 23–Sept. 15, 2017
Time: Varies per concert
Cost: $35.00 and up

Kirkland Summer Concerts
This awesome concert series, held right at Kirkland’s Juanita Beach Park, will feature the best kindie bands in town every Tuesday morning starting July 11. In addition to kiddie shows, all ages evening shows will take place on Thursday evenings starting July 6 at Marina Park. Bring the sand buckets and water shoes… these rockin’ concerts are at the beach!

Juanita Beach Park (kid’s concerts)
9703 N.E. Juanita Drive
Kirkland, Wa 98034
Online: kirklandsummerconcerts.weebly.com

Dates: July 11-Aug. 22, 2017
Time: 10 a.m.-11 a.m.
Cost: Free

Marina Park – (all ages concerts)
25 Lakeshore Plaza Dr.
Kirkland, Wa 98033
Online: kirklandsummerconcerts.weebly.com

Dates: July 6–Aug. 17, 2017
Time: 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

photo: City of Issaquah

Concerts on the Green, Issaquah 
Starting on July 11, you can enjoy Tuesday evening outdoor concerts at the Issaquah Community Center. If you’re too tired to pack a picnic dinner, concessions will be available through the Kiwanis Club of Issaquah. Sorry, but Fido is going to have to sit this one out. No dogs are allowed at the concerts.

Issaquah Community Center
301 Rainier Blvd. S.
Issaquah, Wa 98027
Online: ci.issaquah.wa.us

Dates: July 11–Aug. 29, 2017
Time: 7 p.m.–8:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

Sammamish Concerts in the Park
This Thursday evening summer concert series returns to Pine Lake Park on July 13. In addition to great family-friendly tunes, enjoy tasty treats provided by Sammamish Rotary and Sammamish Kiwanis and plenty of space for the kiddies to get their crazies out before bed.

Pine Lake Park
2401 228th Ave. S.E.
Redmond, Wa 98053
Online: sammamish.us

Dates: July 13–Aug. 24, 2017
Time: 6:30 p.m.–8 p.m.
Cost: Free

photo: City of Everett

Everett Children’s Concert Series
For families living in the North Sound, Thornton A. Sullivan Park is going to be the place to be on Thursday mornings starting July 6. Bring a picnic lunch and a blanket and enjoy an hour of family-friendly, top-notch performers including Mo Philips, The Not-Its!, Tim Noah, Recess Monkey, Mister G, Brian Waite Band and Caspar Babypants.

Thornton A. Sullivan Park
11405 Silver Lake Rd.
Everett, Wa 98208
Online: everettwa.gov/808/Childrens-Concert-Series

Dates: July 6-Aug. 17, 2017
Time: 10 a.m.-11 a.m.
Cost: Free

Kenmore Summer Concert Series
Enjoy five weeks of free, diverse concerts on Thursday nights starting July 6. Bring your blankets, lawn chairs and dinner and enjoy these outdoor concerts in beautiful Saint Edward State Park.

Saint Edward State Park
14445 Juanita Dr. N.E.
Kenmore, Wa 98028
Online: kenmorewa.gov/events

Dates: July 6–Aug. 10, 2017
Time: 6 p.m.–8 p.m.
Cost: Free

photo: Tukwila Parks and Recreation

Peanut Butter & Jam Family Concert Series, Tukwila
This popular noontime concert series will feature a star-studded lineup of three local kindie performers on Wednesdays in August. Start the series off with Brian Vogan and His Good Buddies, then it’s Recess Monkey and finish it up with Caspar Babypants. After you take in a rockin’ concert, hit the spray park or enjoy a picnic lunch in the large grassy area.

Tukwila Community Center
12424 42nd Ave. S.
Tukwila, Wa 98168
Online: tukwilawa.gov/recreation

Date: Aug. 2, 9 & 16, 2017
Time: noon-1 p.m.
Cost: Free

Kids Club Concerts, Bonney Lake
For those families living in the South Sound, mark your calendars with a these fun, family events at Allan Yorke Park. Kids Club events will be taking place on Monday evenings and you can expect to see kindie faves like Cowboy Buck & Elizabeth, Joanie Leeds, Cap’n Arr and Caspar Babypants. View the entertainment schedule online.

Allan Yorke Park
7302 W. Tapps Hwy.
Bonney Lake, Wa  98391
Online: ci.bonney-lake.wa.us/section_community/parks_recreation/special_events.shtml#kidsclub

Dates: July 10-Aug. 14, 2017
Times: Mondays at 6:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

Tunes @ Tapps, Bonney Lake
Come on out to Outdoor Market at 5 p.m. and stay to listen to great live music Wednesday nights at 6:30 p.m. beginning on July 5. Music groups include General 7 Dixie Land Band, Folsom Prism, Heart by Heart’s Salute to the Armed Forces, Danny Verson: The Illusion of Elvis and others. View the entertainment schedule online.

Allan Yorke Park
7302 W. Tapps Hwy.
Bonney Lake, Wa  98391
Online: ci.bonney-lake.wa.us/section_community/parks_recreation/special_events.shtml#kidsclub

Dates: July 5-Aug. 16, 2017
Times: Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.
Cost: Free

photo: Suncadia

Summer Nights in the Village, Suncadia
If you’re planning a getaway to Suncadia this summer, check out some of the Northwest’s best musical talent at the resort’s outdoor amphitheater in July and August. Six acts are scheduled to appear starting July 15. Pack your blankets, lawn chairs and a picnic or purchase food and beverages from the on-site vendors and take in the stunning Cascade Mountain views at these free summer concerts.

Suncadia Village Amphitheater & Pavilion
3600 Suncadia Trail
Cle Elum, Wa 98922
Online: suncadiaresort.com

Dates: July 15, 21 & 29 and Aug. 4, 18 & 25, 2017
Time: various times (check listing)
Cost: Free

Did we miss your favorite summer concert series? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll add it to our list.

— Jeffrey Totey & Kristina Moy


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