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June 14, 2011

Merchants Square Summer Breeze Concerts Celebrate 20th Anniversary

The annual Merchants Square Summer Breeze Concert Series returns for the 20th year, featuring special bands and great music. The regular series runs July 6-Aug. 24. This year two additional concerts have been added on June 25 and July 2. The free outdoor events take place Wednesdays from June 25 to Aug. 24.

  • Peninsula Concert Band - The 60-member concert band from Newport News plays a variety of music from show tunes to marches and pop standards. 6–7:15 p.m. Saturday, June 25.
  • U.S. Air Force (USAF) Heritage of America Band - Back for the 20th year, the full Heritage of America concert band will play American favorites and patriotic tunes in honor of Independence Day. 7–8:30 p.m. Saturday, July 2.
  • Kings of Swing - This versatile dance and show band from Richmond plays beach music, Motown favorites and everyone's favorite music of the 1970s - 1990s. 7–9 p.m. Wednesday, July 6.
  • B2B Band - This seven-member Jimmy Buffett tribute band hails from Richmond. While Jimmy Buffet is the inspiration, B2B covers a wide variety of music from The Beatles to Kenny Chesney, plus some original tunes of their own. 7–9 p.m. Wednesday, July 13.
  • Sharon Rae North - This Ohio-born singer performed extensively in Atlanta and recently relocated to Richmond. Sharon sings jazz and standards and often adds in some jazz versions of R&B and Top 40 hits. 7–9 p.m. Wednesday, July 20. Also featuring opening act of “Alladin Jr.” by Stagelights at 6:15 p.m.
  • Slapwater - Virginia’s premier party and dance band, a.k.a. “The Lords of Longevity,” has earned numerous awards while delighting crowds in Hampton Roads for more than 30 years. 7–9 p.m. Wednesday, July 27.
  • USAF Rhythm in Blue Ensemble - A versatile 13-piece ensemble that performs a wide variety of jazz, blues and funk. 7–8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 3.
  • USAF Heritage Ramblers Ensemble - Heritage Ramblers bring the New Orleans and Chicago styles of traditional jazz to life in each performance. 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 10.
  • USAF Blue Aces Ensemble - The energetic productions of this 10-piece ensemble encompass a wide variety of musical styles. 7-8:30 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 17.
  • USAF Heritage of America Band - The Langley-based concert band plays a mixture of old favorites and modern works. 7–8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 24.

    Beginning with the July 6 concert, Merchants Square also offers children’s entertainment beginning at 6:30 p.m. including face painting, bubble making and clowns.

    For more information about weather-related cancellations, please see the Merchants Square website, or call the events hotline on concert days: (757) 565-8889.

    All concerts are free, and are sponsored by Merchants Square, the City of Williamsburg, Legacy Financial Group and the York County Arts Commission.

    Merchants Square, the shopping and dining district adjacent to Colonial Williamsburg’s renowned Historic Area, is home to more than 40 shops and restaurants. Built in 1935, Merchants Square is recognized as one of the first planned shopping malls in the United States. In 2005 Merchants Square was added to the National Register of Historic Places along with the Williamsburg Lodge and the Williamsburg Inn to make up the Merchants Square and Resort Historic District. Merchants Square properties are owned by Colonial Williamsburg with the majority leased to private business owners. Revenue from Colonial Williamsburg’s commercial property initiatives supports the educational programs of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the not-for-profit educational organization that oversees and operates the restored 18th-century town of Williamsburg. For more information on Merchants Square, visit

    Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s website at

    Media Contact:
    Penna Rogers
    (757) 220-7121

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