An outdoor concert is a great way to spend a carefree afternoon or warm, summer evening. Music and summer go hand in hand; the sheer number of outdoor concert series in the area is proof of the fact.
From indie pop to reggae to steel drums to country, children can listen – or get down and boogie – to a new type of music and have fun, too. Best of all, most concerts are free. Be sure to bring a blanket, a picnic and an extra layer of clothes if you attend an evening show.
Some of the best experiences local parents tout are the ones in their own neighborhoods, where kids can meet up with friends. In Seattle, check out the Woodland Park Zoo shows or the concert series at Olympic Sculpture Park. There are well-loved events at University Village, City Hall, Seattle Center, the Ballard Locks and various Seattle parks as well.
On the Eastside, rock out at the kids’ concerts at Kirkland’s Marina Park or the family-friendly events at Redmond City Hall, Mercerdale Park, Issaquah Community Center or Sammamish’s Pine Lake Park. Kids are also welcome at the Chateau Ste. Michelle concerts in Woodinville and the lunchtime concerts in downtown Bellevue.
The north end has several children’s concerts, in Shoreline, Everett and Mill Creek. There is a popular series at St. Edwards Park in Kenmore, too. The south end is chock-full of kids’ music events, with concerts in Auburn, Renton, Kent, Tukwila, Tacoma, Lacey and Bonney Lake. All-ages shows are also held in Puyallup, Olympia and Gig Harbor.
Here are some particularly kid-friendly concerts:
TUESDAY, JULY 3
Children’s Entertainment Series. Wonderland Tea Party Comedy Show today, Jeff Evans July 10, Brian Waite Band July 17, Roberto the Magnificent July 24, Rowdy Refs July 31, Eric Herman Aug. 7. 6:30 p.m. FREE. Huntamer Park, 618 Woodland Square Loop S.E., Lacey. 360-491-0857. www.ci.lacey.wa.us.
TUESDAY, JULY 10
Shoreline Noon Concert Series. Halau Hula O’ Napualani today, Anzanga Marimba Ensemble July 24, Caspar Babypants Aug. 7. FREE. Richmond Beach Saltwater Park, 2021 N.W. 190th St., Shoreline. www.cityofshoreline.com/index.aspx?page=21&recordid=754.
Children’s Concert Series. Johnny Bregar today, Caspar Babypants July 17, The Not-Its! July 24, Eric Herman and the Thunder Puppies July 31, Recess Monkey Aug. 7, Cowboy Buck and Elizabeth Aug. 14, The Board of Education Aug. 21, The Brian Waite Band Aug. 28. 10 to 11 a.m. $2 suggested donation. Marina Park, 25 Lakeshore Plaza Drive, Kirkland. 425-587-3350. www.kirklandsummerconcerts.org.
Kids First! Concert Series. Noon to 1 p.m. Tuesdays through Aug. 21 (no show Aug. 7) in Sammamish. Alex Zerbe today at Beaver Lake Park, 25101 S.E. 24th St.,, Lori Henriques July 17 at City Hall at Sammamish Commons, 801 228th Ave. S.E., Karen Quest July 24 at East Sammamish Park, 21300 N.E. 16th St., The Board of Education July 31 and The Harmonica Pocket Aug. 14 at City Hall at Sammamish Commons, Eric Herman Aug. 21 at Ebright Creek Park, 1317 212th Ave. S.E. 425-295-0500. www.ci.sammamish.wa.us.
Noon Tunes. Reptile Isle today, Diva & the Dixies July 17, Men of Worth July 24, Cowboy Buck and Elizabeth July 31, Batch 5 Aug. 7, The Not-Its! Aug. 14, Tim Noah Aug. 21. Noon to 1 p.m. FREE. Pioneer Park, 324 S. Meridian, Puyallup. 253-841-5457. www.cityofpuyallup.org.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 11
Kidd Valley Summer Concert Series. Enjoy family-friendly musical acts Wednesdays through Aug. 15. 7 p.m. FREE. Gene Coulon Memorial Beach Park, 1201 Lake Washington Blvd. N., Renton. 425-277-3324. www.kiddvalley.com.
Kids’ SummerStage. Recess Monkey today, The Magic of Louie Foxx July 18, Eric Ode and Viren Lemmer July 25, Eric Herman Aug. 1, Caspar Babypants Aug. 8, Brian Vogan and His Good Buddies Aug. 15. Noon. FREE. Les Grove Park, 910 Ninth St. S.E., Auburn. 253-931-3043. www.auburnwa.gov.
Wednesdays for Kids! Tickle Tune Typhoon July 11, Il Teatro Calamari’s Rapunzel July 18, Roberto the Magnificent July 25, Caspar Babypants Aug. 1, Recess Monkey Aug. 8, The Harmonica Pocket Aug. 15. Noon to 1 p.m. FREE. Town Square Plaza, Second Avenue and Harrison Street, Kent. 253-856-5050. www.ci.kent.wa.us/content.aspx?id=19622.
THURSDAY, JULY 12
Children’s Concerts. Paul Lippert’s Tall Tunes today, The Not-Its! July 19, Brian Vogan & His Good Buddies July 26, Tim Noah Aug. 2, Recess Monkey Aug. 9, The Brian Waite Band Aug. 16, Caspar Babypants Aug. 23. 10 to 11 a.m. FREE. Thornton A. Sullivan Park, 11405 Silver Lake Road, Everett. 425-257-8300. www.everettwa.org.
FRIDAY, JULY 13
Noon Tunes. Pack a picnic, blanket or lawn chair and enjoy an all-ages outdoor concert. Cowboy Buck and Elizabeth today, Rodney Raccoon Aug. 3, Nancy Stewart Aug. 24. Noon to 1 p.m. FREE. STAR Center, 3873 S. 66th St., Tacoma. 253-404-3939. www.metroparkstacoma.org.
SATURDAY, JULY 14
Music & Movies. Concert (7 p.m.) and movie (dusk). That Thing You Do! (PG) today, Tangled (PG) July 21, Rio (G) July 28, Soul Surfer (PG) Aug. 4, Hairspray (PG) and Mamma Mia! (PG-13) Aug. 11. Bring food or purchase snacks. FREE. Huntamer Park, 618 Woodland Square Loop S.E., Lacey. 360-491-0857. www.ci.lacey.wa.us.
TUESDAY, JULY 17
Shoreline Noon Concert Series. Smilin Scandinavians today, Magic by Jeff Evans July 31, Jimmy Free’s Friends Aug. 14. FREE. Hamlin Park, 16006 15th Ave. N.E., Shoreline. www.cityofshoreline.com/index.aspx?page=21&recordid=754.
FRIDAY, JULY 20
Peanut Butter and Jam Concerts. Caspar Babypants today, Bubbleman July 27, Eric Ode Aug. 3, The Not-Its! Aug. 10. Bring a picnic and blankets. Noon to 1 p.m. FREE. Tukwila Community Center Spray Park, 12424 42nd Ave. S., Tukwila. 206-768-2822. www.ci.tukwila.wa.us.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 25
Children’s Concert Series. Eric Haines today, Alleyoop Aug. 1, Tia Quackertunes Aug. 8, Cowboy Buck and Elizabeth Aug. 15. Noon to 1 p.m. FREE. Library Park, 15429 Bothell-Everett Hwy., Mill Creek. 425-745-1891. www.cityofmillcreek.com.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 26
Noon Tunes Concerts for Kids. Family concert with Dr. Noize and Recess Monkey. Bring a blanket or folding chair. Noon to 2 p.m. FREE. Freeway Park, 700 Seneca St., Seattle. 206-684-7710. www.seattle.gov/parks/downtown.