Summer in Cedarhurst and across the Five Towns means concerts in Andrew J. Parise Cedarhurst Park, and for the 23rd consecutive year the free Tuesday entertainment series sponsored by local businesses and residents will take place beginning on July 9.
Cedarhurst village mayor Benjamin Weinstock was on the board when the series kicked off in 1996. “When I was driving home from work one day, I drove through Garden City and saw a musician playing under a gazebo,” said Weinstock, a lawyer who works in Uniondale. “I discussed the idea with Mayor [Andrew] Parise and he thought that it would be great for the village.”
Weinstock believes the summer concerts help community members to disconnect from the electronics and connect as neighbors. “These concerts provide us with a throwback to a time where weren’t glued to our Smartphones,” he said. “It allows our residents to catch up and see each other. It just has a nice small-town America feel to it.”
The American Bombshells will lead off the eight-concert series on the second Tuesday of July. The group performs patriotic songs and has appeared previously on “The Today Show.” While the dates are still being confirmed, other acts set to perform include: a Fleetwood Mac tribute band Fleetwood Macked, JC Driesan Drive, a Neil Diamond tribute band One Hot Night and the 5 Stone Band. Each concert starts at 8 p.m. and includes a pre-show at 7 p.m. that features children’s entertainment.
There are ethnic-themed nights: Irish night on July 23 and the Three Po’ Tenors playing on Italian night on July 30. Gourmet Glatt Kosher Supermarket will sponsor Jewish Night on Aug. 20., the musical act will be announced.
Weinstock pointed out that Jewish night garners the highest attendance for the series and Gourmet Glatt has sponsored the night in recent years. “Last year, we had about 3,000 people at Jewish night,” he said. “Gourmet Glatt is so community-minded. They usually bring in great acts for that night.” Weinstock also pointed out that last year’s Jewish night took place at the park’s baseball field instead of under the gazebo. “We also rented a stage from the Town of Hempstead last year,” he added.
Cedarhurst resident Joseph Bertucci said that he used to help the village book talent when the series first began. The village now uses a professional booker. He said the series helps bring village residents together. “There are not many places that have a family community like Cedarhurst,” Bertucci said. “Andy Parise put this series together well and Mayor Weinstock is doing a great job of continuing it. “
Bob Block owner of the Jewelry Showroom in Cedarhurst and a series sponsor, has attended the series since its inception and noted why he enjoys the series so much. “The village does a great job of getting a nice mix of talent for each concert,” he said. “There are different themes for everybody to enjoy. The concerts have such a great community flavor to it that makes it so special for me. I encourage everyone in the community to take advantage and attend a series like this.”