Napanee’s Music by the River series returns June 23

Sol and the Switchblades' Sol Woodland plays a riff during a previous Music by the River series. The outdoor concert series returns to Conservation Park this summer. (Photo by Adam Prudhomme).

Sarah Williams
Beaver Staff

Music by the River Concert Series will be the soundtrack for many Sunday afternoons this summer in Napanee.

The series debut will be June 23 at 2 p.m. Altogether, there will be five shows: June 28, July 14, July 28, Aug. 11 and Aug. 25. Each concert will be held at 2 p.m. in Conservation Park.

According to Cliff Trott, organizer of the event, the series began over 20 years ago, although it did not run for several years at a time. Approximately six years ago, the event was resurrected, with the Town of Napanee playing an instrumental role by including the series in their annual budget. Prior to this, visiting musicians were not paid to come and play in Napanee.

“We want to support musicians,” said Trott, noting that a number of well-known musicians will be attending this year’s concerts, including K.E.WT. (a duo of accomplished pianist Kathryn Briggs and award-winning singer/songwriter Terry Tufts), Tom Savage, The Frontenac Concert Band, Steve Medd and Jon McLurg and the Rideau River Big Band.

Notably, there will be two big bands playing the series this year, one of which is the closing act and has been a staple of the series for years. According to Trott they will,“harken back to a time when people would sit outside with a picnic and listen to music.”

With a “build it and they will come” mentality, Trott is hoping that the series, combined with other attractions that Napanee has to offer, will pull more people into the downtown core to “make a night of it,” as he said.

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