Vancouver’s serenade to summer

Noon concerts, Six to Sunset series entertain people of all ages

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Riverview Six to Sunset Series

Family-friendly free concerts, 6 to 8 p.m. Thursdays through Aug. 11, starting today at Esther Short Park, Eighth and Columbia streets in downtown Vancouver.

Terry Lee Noon Concerts

Noon to 1 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 10 at Esther Short Park. Free.

6 to 8 p.m. Thursdays at Esther Short Park.

Today: GruVbox.

July 14: 5 Guys Named Moe.

July 21: Patrick Lamb Band.

July 28: Quarterflash.

Aug. 4: The Antics.

Aug. 11: Hit Machine.

Terry Lee Noon Concerts

Noon to 1 p.m. Wednesdays at Esther Short Park.

July 13: Justin Klump.

July 20: Key of Dreams.

July 27: Flexor T.

Aug. 3: Tom May.

Aug. 10: Misty Mamas.

Riverview Six to Sunset Series

Family-friendly free concerts, 6 to 8 p.m. Thursdays through Aug. 11, starting today at Esther Short Park, Eighth and Columbia streets in downtown Vancouver.

Terry Lee Noon Concerts

Noon to 1 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 10 at Esther Short Park. Free.

6 to 8 p.m. Thursdays at Esther Short Park.

Today: GruVbox.

July 14: 5 Guys Named Moe.

July 21: Patrick Lamb Band.

July 28: Quarterflash.

Aug. 4: The Antics.

Aug. 11: Hit Machine.

Terry Lee Noon Concerts

Noon to 1 p.m. Wednesdays at Esther Short Park.

July 13: Justin Klump.

July 20: Key of Dreams.

July 27: Flexor T.

Aug. 3: Tom May.

Aug. 10: Misty Mamas.

With a light breeze easily carrying the sounds of the Vancouver Pops Orchestra, Mindy Sievers sat in the shade at Esther Short Park in downtown Vancouver on Wednesday with blankets spread around her, visiting family lounging and her two kids splashing in the nearby water fountain.

Everything seemed on target for a perfect afternoon — except they could have used some chairs. Instead, Sievers leaned on her husband, Tony, who balanced them both on the cooler holding those icy drinks. The family was among several hundred people who showed for the first Terry Lee Noon Concert of the summer, held in the state’s oldest city park.

Sievers, 35, said she’s attended the concerts for the past several years.

“It’s a charming part of the city,” said Sievers, a Salmon Creek resident. “You get your kids a little culture, it’s a good way to spend the afternoon.”

The noon concerts join the Riverview Six to Sunset Concert Series, set to start its 25th year of free music tonight.

That’s what Chuck and Grace Prochnow of Hazel Dell said they were waiting for. The pair said they stopped by to enjoy Wednesday’s noon show and a sandwich after working out nearby, but the “main event is tomorrow night,” Chuck Prochnow, 78, said.

“It’s a great community feeling, coming down and watching families having a good time,” said Grace, 72.

The longtime evening concerts first took place at Waterworks Park near Clark College, before moving to Esther Short Park, and feature family-friendly acts.

The Thursday night series is presented by Riverview Community Bank with support from Dr. Bonny Lund, a Vancouver dentist; and contributions from the Port of Portland, Stanford’s Restaurant and Bar, Waste Connections, The Columbian and Corwin Beverage Company.

Both the noon and evening series, held weekly through Aug. 11, have food vendors and kids’ activities.

As the Vancouver Pops Orchestra played tunes from Tchaikovsky to John Philip Sousa marches, little girls in tutus spun with excitement while other children blew bubbles and conducted science experiments at a Science in the Park booth.

Terry Lee, the Vancouver attorney who sponsors the noon concerts with support from The Columbian and Corwin, stood back, watching the scene unfold.

“It’s fun seeing the crowd — it’s either families or older folks,” he said. “Isn’t it great?”

Andrea Damewood: 360-735-4542 or andrea.damewood@columbian.com.