The Windham Parks & Recreation Department is hosting its first annual summer concert series at Dundee Park.

The series kicks off Wednesday, July 13, with a performance by The Hurricanes, a Portland-based rock band.

An outdoor concert series has been in the works for some time, said Linda Brooks, who started as Parks and Recreation director for Windham two years ago. Ever since she started the job  “there was a desire to do this,” she said.

A lot of Maine towns (including Naples) have summer concert series, she said, and they’re a great way to bring the community together.

“We’re looking to build community events,” Brooks said.

The Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee spearheaded the organization of the series shortly after organizating Winterfest, held for the first time this year at Donnabeth Lippman Park, according to Donna Chapman, town council chairwoman and parks advisory committee member.

After considering Lippman Park as the site for this event as well, and deciding there was not enough parking, the committee landed on Dundee Park off River Road, according to Chapman. The grills and picnic tables mean attendees can host barbeques as well.

The committee anticipates the event will “bring people together,” Brooks said. “It’s meant for all ages, and the entertainment will please all ages as well.”

Chapman said the event will be well-suited to parents with young children, or those who don’t play sports who might otherwise be occupied during the summer evenings. 

“This gives us something else to pull us all together as a community,” she said. 

Later concerts in the series include Jimmy Junkins and the Big Fat Cadillac on July 20, Douglas Elder on July 27 and Rick Charette August 3.

The concerts will take place on a pavilion overlooking the water, a building that existed prior to the concert series. Attendees will gather on the sand beach and in the grassy park to hear the music.

A concession stand will be operated outside the auxiliary building close to the parking lot during each concert. The committee has encouraged community organizations to run concession stands as fundraisers for their groups, according to Brooks. Project Graduation, The American Legion Auxiliary and Boy Scouts are scheduled to host so far.

In planning the event, Brooks said she was thankful to the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee “for their enthusiasm and contacts in helping to find bands.”

Chapman said The Hurricanes are “a personal favorite,” and as they’re the opening show, “it’s a great kickoff for the summer.” 

Chapman encouraged families to bring blankets and beach balls, have some fun and relax.

The committee hopes to make the concert series an annual event, Brooks said, and is already considering a couple bands for next year. In the following years, it hopes to find local business sponsors for the event.

All performances start at 6:30 p.m., and attendance is free as admission to the park is free after 5 p.m. on the days of the performances. Typically, adult admission is $3 after 5 p.m.

There will be van service for senior citizens who wish to hitch a ride to the event, Brooks said. Seniors can register for the service by calling the town office.

If a performance is canceled, rain dates will be held Aug. 10 and Aug. 17.

Dundee Park, where Windham’s Parks and Recreation Department is hosting a summer concerts series kicking off next week. 

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