I’ve been doing a little sprucing up on SJL, readying it to become not just a blog, but also my writer’s website. You may notice on the right that I finally put a permanent link to my book, The One Year Women in Christianity. I’ve also fixed some broken links and cleaned up the back end of the blog. I’m planning on adding a couple of new pages in June with links to my published works and information about how to work with me. Now that the sprucing is done, I’ll be posting more frequently.
That starts today with one of my all-time favorite free things to do in the summer in South Jersey, the Haddon Lake Park Sundown Concert Series in my home town of Haddon Heights. It takes place at the Norcross-McLaughlin Memorial Dell. In past years, I have sat under the stars while fireflies danced around me listening to amazing artists like Jonatha Brooke, Dar Williams, Jeffrey Gaines, and Ollabelle – all for free. I was excited for those artists because I already knew their work. One great thing about this concert series, though, is that you never know who you’re going to discover when you show up on a Wednesday night to hear a musician or band you’re unfamiliar with.
Last year’s opening show was by Mary Gauthier. I had never heard of her, but I am now a huge fan. Listening to her sing, I couldn’t help but think of the song Killing Me Softly. Mary sang her cathartic songs “as if she knew me in all my dark despair.” Seriously, her songs cut through me, made me cry necessary tears, and helped me heal a little from some heartache. Mary’s songs make me braver.
I can’t promise any of this years’ acts will make you braver, but I can almost guarantee heading to the Haddon Lake Park Sundown Concert Series will help you relax a little and enjoy the best of what summer in South Jersey has to offer. Here is this year’s lineup.
- June 3: The Last Bison plus special guest Kevin Burke
- June 17: JD Souther plus special guest Chris Walters
- July 8: Guthrie Brown & The Family Tree plus special guest Sara O’Brien & Community Rocks! Kids
- July 22: Paula Cole plus special guest Casey Alvarez
- August 5: The London Souls plus special guest Ben Kessler
- August 19: Liz Longley plus special guest Jesse Gimbel
All shows are family friendly and start at 7:30. There’s usually a vendor set up to sell snacks, but I always bring my own little picnic with me. The Haddon Lake Sundown Concert Series is sponsored by WXPN and the Camden County Board of Freeholders.
The Norcross-Memorial Dell is located at 13th Avenue Park Drive and Prospect Boulevard, Haddon Heights, NJ 08035
You can find a complete calendar of free summer events in Camden County including concerts other venues on the County Events Calendar.
I can’t end this post without sharing one of Mary Gauthier’s songs that make me braver. I just can’t keep her music to myself.