This summer, the Arts and Cultural Trust, Rochester Parks and Recreation Department, RNeighbors, and the Rochester Civic Theatre are partnering to showcase three neighborhood parks and a selection of musicians and performing artists.
This two-year, city-wide pilot project is designed to spotlight Rochester’s vibrant and abundant park systems, and expose the community to rich arts programming. Long-term, the initiative is designed to create social experiences along with cultural arts programming based on input from residents in different neighborhoods.
Six Mile Grove
When: July 14 at 2 p.m.
Which park: Cooke Park
Genre: Americana artistry and musicianship
Why: Because their self-produced, self-managed, and self-recorded music honors their humble Lyle, Minn. roots. Inspiration ranges from Bob Dylan to the Jayhawks, and the thoughtful lyrics from the new album, “Million Birds,” depict the humble working class. The band traveled with legendary Johnny Cash guitarist, the late Bob Wootton who said, “there’s nothing fancy about them and they don’t try to be something they’re not.”
Rochester Arts Ensemble with Danny Solis
When: July 21 at 2 p.m.
Which park: Parkside
Genre: Music, dance, and spoken word reflecting diverse cultural traditions
Why: The Rochester Arts Ensemble is a multidisciplinary group revolving around poetry, dance, and music. They strive for diversity and inclusion and are collaborative by nature and design. You’ll experience more like this poem from Danny Solis: “…and here comes dusk again, and the dust of evening is lifted by nights blue breath and begins to take the shape of great dark wings, and a great hunger wakes in a small place and begins to grow…”
Gospel, Blues, and Jazz! with Mitch Stevenson, John Sievers, and Doug Porter
When: July 28 at 2 p.m.
Which park: Slattery Park
Genre: Everything good
Why: Because this crew will get you up and dancing and teach you a thing or two about blues, jazz, Motown, and R&B music. The evolution of music includes an eclectic blend of music performed by talented musicians and composers. The music is steeped in deep southern roots, and you can expect to hear guitar, clarinet, tuba, trombone, bass guitar, and more.
Come join the fun and experience a new park that may be outside of your neighborhood. These events are free and family-friendly. Bring chairs, a blanket, refreshments, and enjoy quality entertainment. The programming is slated for three consecutive Sundays in July from 2 to 3:30 p.m.
This article originally ran in the June/July issue of Rochester Magazine.