Lunch on the Lawn puts music on the menu

The symphony presents the events for 4 straight Fridays.

The musical sounds of summer will return outdoors Friday as Lunch on the Lawn returns for the first of four concerts.

These free events, presented by the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, will be 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. four consecutive Fridays at The Springfield Center for the Arts at Wittenberg University.

Bring your own lunch or purchase food. Box lunches featuring several sandwich choices and vegetarian options with drink for $6 each.

Springfield Symphony Executive Director Robin Zimmann said this year’s lineup will feature a mix of returning favorites and newcomers, and a different sound each week.

“If people are looking for a way to enjoy the summer weather and music, they will enjoy this.”

The series kicks off Friday with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra Woodwind Quartet, which returns to the series for the first time in several years. All the musicians are principle performers with the symphony, Zimmann said.

“These are some of the area’s finest woodwind musicians and our patrons who enjoy the symphony will like this,” she said.

String Sounds Quartet is a newcomer to the series, featuring musicians who are substitutes for the symphony regulars. But new doesn’t translate to experience as this group has performed together for 35 years.

Expect a range of classical, pop and Broadway arrangements during their set on Aug. 2.

Crowd-pleaser GoodVibes Jazz Quartet will present a range of sounds from jazz and blues to Latin and swing music during their set on Aug. 9.

Rounding out the series on Aug. 16 will be Dr. Tony’s Original Ragtime Band, a large group playing early 20th century pre-jazz era standards. This is yet another returning favorite to the series.

A tent will be available for shade for performances. Attendees can also set up blankets or lawn chairs prior to shows, similar to the Summer Arts Festival format.

Zimmann said 250-300 people attend the Lunch on the Lawn series, including several moms and their little ones.

“Lunch on the Lawn is very family-friendly in a nice atmosphere,” she said. “ You’ll come away with a sense of an hour-and-a-half well spent.”

The Springfield Symphony Orchestra will launch its 70th season in the fall.

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