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June 1, 2012

Merchants Square Summer Breeze Concerts Celebrate 21st Anniversary

The annual Merchants Square Summer Breeze Concert Series returns for the 21st year, featuring special bands and great music. This year the annual Independence Day concert, featuring the U.S. Air Force Heritage of America Band, will take place on July 1. The free outdoor events take place Wednesdays from July 11 to Aug. 29.

  • U.S. Air Force (USAF) Heritage of America Band - Back for the 21st year, the full Heritage of America concert band will play American favorites and patriotic tunes in honor of Independence Day. 6:30–7:45 p.m. Sunday, July 1.
  • Central Virginia Jazz Orchestra – This selective 19-member orchestra specializes in big band jazz, and will feature the talented jazz vocalist Sharon Rae North who performed in the Square in 2011. 7–9 p.m. Wednesday, July 11.
  • Kings of Swing - This versatile dance and show band from Richmond plays beach music, Motown favorites and everyone's favorite music of the 1970s - 90s. 7–9 p.m. Wednesday, July 18.
  • 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 25.
  • USAF Heritage Brass Ensemble - From classical to jazz and popular music, from Bach to the Beatles, the quintet brings its brilliant brass sound to all music genres, providing a variety of music that’s as educational as it is exciting. 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 1.
  • 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. 8.
  • 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. 15.
  • U.S. Army TRADOC Band - The Fort Eustis-based Army concert band plays a mixture of old favorites and modern works. 7–8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22.
  • 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. 29.

    Beginning with the July 11 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, www.merchantssquare.org, 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 and the Legacy Financial Group.

    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 www.merchantssquare.org.

    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 www.history.org.

    Media Contact:
    Penna Rogers
    (757) 220-7121



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