What’s that sound in Green Lake?


THE UNIVERSITY OF Wisconsin marching band performs for a full crowd at Deacon Mills Park in a recent year. The band will return Wednesday, July 10 and is one of many music options Green Lake has to offer this summer. submitted photo

by Joe Schulz

Music lovers can unplug their headphones and delete Spotify because there will be more than 30 chances to listen to live music in the area this summer.

Between Concerts in the Park, performances at the Thrasher Opera House, concerts put on by the Green Lake Festival of Music and various other performances, music aficionados will be busy this summer.

Concerts in the park

The Green Lake Area Chamber of Commerce will hold 10 free concerts Wednesdays from June 12 to Aug. 14, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Deacon Mills Park.

Concerts in the Park kicks off with the Ripon High School jazz band performing June 12.

July 10 is family night, offering a picnic in the park at 5 p.m., with live music starting at 6 p.m. The night also will feature a performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison marching band and The Ricochettes performing classic rock hits from the 1960s.

Green Lake Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Liane Walsh selects music from a wide array of genres because she wants “a little bit of something for everybody.”

According to Dartford Historical Society President Larry Behlen Concerts in the Park started in 1987.

The concerts originally were coordinated by McConnell Inn’s Mary Jo Johnson, but later the Green Lake Area Chamber of Commerce took over the scheduling.

For a complete list of concerts in the park, visit www.visitgreenlake.com.

Thrasher Opera House

The Thrasher Opera House also will host at least seven concerts this summer.

California Guitar Trio kicks the summer off combining jazz, classical and surf rock, Friday, June 28 at 7:30 p.m.

Other concerts include the John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band Friday, July 12; 2016 Grammy award-winning funk, rhythm and blues artist Jon Cleary Friday, July 19; American ukulele composer Jake Shimabukuro Thursday, July 25; and chamber Rock duo Mystery Loves Company Monday, Aug. 19. All concerts will get underway at 7:30 p.m.

For a complete list of events and performances, visit www.thrasheroperahouse.com.

Green Lake
festival of music

The Green Lake Music Festival is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, by putting on more than 13 free concerts.

Internationally respected musician, educator and clinician Eun-Joo Kwak will present a piano recital Wednesday, June 12, from 2 to 3 p.m. at the Thrasher Opera House.

The two-time Grammy-nominated string quartet, Spektral Quartet will play Wednesday, June 26 from 2 to 3 p.m. at the Caestecker Public Library, before returning to Green Lake to play another free concert Saturday, June 29 from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Thrasher Opera House.

Western swing, country, blues and jazz band, The Suwannee Swing Saloon, will play Thursday, July 4 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the porch of Ripon’s College’s Harwood Memorial Union.

2019 Grammy-winning violinist James Ehnes will perform June 24 from 7:30 to 9 p.m. at the Lawrence Memorial Chapel in Appleton.

Wharf fest

Wharf Fest will rock the Starlight Stage Saturday, June 29 starting at 3 p.m.

The event will feature three bands playing three genres of music. The opening act will be the bluegrass band Material Boys. The second act will be a reggae twist on classic rock performed by Thee Grateful Dub. Event Coordinator Jon Ahrens’ band Ouroboros will headline the night with 1970s inspired rock.

OUROBOROS WILL HEADLINE Wharf Fest Saturday, June 29. Members of the band are, from left, Jason Menting (keys), Nick Czar (lead guitar), James Blashe (drummer), Jon Ahrens (vocals and rhythm guitar) and Joe Ramsey (bass). submitted photo

Ahrens noted that Ouroboros came together last fall and he’s already written an entire album, which will be premiered at Wharf Fest.

“Our music kind of falls somewhere between the Black Crows, the Doors and Widspread Panic,” Ahrens said. “It’s very danceable, 70s style roots rock and blues. It’s right in that genre with a little attitude to it.”

Ahrens believes the album is the best music he’s written.

“I thought [Wharf Fest] would be a great opportunity to debut this music, get this younger crowd of musicians into Green Lake and make a family fun event for the day,” Ahrens said.

Other concerts

• Sunday, July 21 at 1 p.m. in Norwegian Bay will be Boat Jam 2019, an event combining water, boats and music.

The event will also feature watersports, cookouts, dancing and more. Country/rock group Riding Shotgun will play tunes out on a barge.

• Saturday, Aug. 17 will be the Avrom Farm Party, which will feature live country/bluegrass music.The lineup for the party has yet to be announced.

Hayden Holbert of Avrom Farm also will smoke pigs.

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