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New Windsor Concert Series starts early this year, in July

New Windsor Concert Series starts early this year, in July
Pet Rock, pictured at the Oakland Mills 40-year birthday party in 2008, will perform Sunday, Aug. 9 as part of this year's bi-weekly New Windsor Summer Concert Series at New Windsor Lions Park. (Baltimore Sun Media Group)

The Town of New Windsor is looking to extend its annual concert series this year but without adding any additional strain on their budget. For the first time this year, the series, usually taking place throughout August, will be extended to take place bi-weekly through July and August.

Ed Smith, town council member and organizer of the concert series, said organizers wanted to make sure those who vacation in August would be able to attend at least some of the concerts.

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"We also wanted to make sure we had less rainouts than we did last year," Smith said. "This way the concerts aren't done in rapid succession like you get with the weekly schedule."

The four concert series will feature performances by a mixture of new artists and those known to the community. It kicks off this Sunday, with a performance by country artist Pat Owens. On Sunday, July 26, Josh and the Good Old Stuff will perform oldies, as will Pet Rock on Sunday Aug. 9. Rounding off the concert series is the Reisterstown Jazz Ensemble on Aug. 23.

Smith said Owens' performance on Sunday will represent a first for the series.

"It may seem hard to believe for a Carroll County concert, but this is the first time we've ever had a country musician," Smith said. "It just seemed like it was time."

He described Pet Rock and the Reisterstown Jazz Ensemble as audience favorites, and said he's heard a large calling to invite them back this year.

Jim Amann, a member of Pet Rock, said they've performed at every New Windsor concert series for about 10 years.

"These community events are always super nice events to play at," Amann said. "I recognize almost all of the faces and get to see people I haven't seen in a while."

Pet Rock is an oldies band based out of Columbia. Amann said he first got hit with the musical bug when he was young and wanted to become a Beatle.

Smith said Josh Christina, of Josh and the Good Old Stuff, was born in the wrong decade. The young performer sings the songs of Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, Ray Charles and more. He has performed at the Maryland State Fair.

"We try to get input from everybody in the community for the line up," Smith said. "I'd like to see this grow into something of a music festival or a weekend-long concert to help draw folks to our small town."

Smith said these kinds of community events are important for a community like New Windsor.

"The biggest thing is to meet some of your neighbors and meet some new friends and see some faces you haven't seen in a while," Smith said. "This gives citizens a chance to meet local politicians and officials. It shows you the type of family atmosphere New Windsor has."

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If you go:

What: New Windsor Summer Concert Series

When: 6 to 8 p.m. July 12, 26, Aug. 9, 23

Where: New Windsor Lions Park, Maple and Lambert avenues

Cost: Free

For more information: Visit http://www.newwindsormd.org.

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