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June 15, 2016

Free Summer Breeze Concert Series Marks 25th Year with Standards, New Sounds

Merchants Square series kicks off July 3 with pre-Independence Day U.S. Air Force Band show, continues Wednesdays through Aug. 31

The free Summer Breeze concert series kicks off its 25th year in Merchants Square July 3 with a special pre-Independence Day show by the United States Air Force Band, leading a lineup that combines standards with fresh new sounds.

The 10 shows, sponsored by Colonial Williamsburg’s Merchants Square and Morgan Stanley Williamsburg Branch, continue Wednesdays through Aug. 31 and showcase genres including jazz, rock, jam, rhythm-and-blues and pop. Favorites including the Army TRADOC Band are joined this year by newcomers like Norfolk rock-and-soul sextet Major and the Monbacks.

“We are so excited to welcome a new and diverse cast of bands and entertainment offerings this year for Summer Breeze,” said Robert Currie, Colonial Williamsburg director of entertainment. “We also welcome back our beloved military bands that have played in years past. This iconic event is a perennial favorite and a perfect opportunity for our local community to gather and enjoy a wide variety of talented performances in the cultural center of Williamsburg: Merchants Square.”

A treat for Grateful Dead fans comes July 27, when local jam band Blind & Dirty performs originals and covers followed by an after-party at Kimball Theatre featuring a rare viewing of “THE GRATEFUL DEAD MOVIE”© at 9:30 p.m. The 1977 concert film, co-directed by Jerry Garcia, is exclusively screened in a limited number of theaters throughout the country. Tickets for the after party are $5 and are available for purchase at the Kimball Theatre box office or online.

Summer Breeze concertgoers are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy take-out dining from one of Merchants Square’s restaurants.

Shows begin at 7 p.m. on Duke of Gloucester Street:

  • July 3: United States Air Force Band (patriotic, big band)

  • July 6: Good Shot Judy (vocal jazz)

  • July 13: Major & the Monbacks (rock, soul)

  • July 20: Brunswick (contemporary brass ensemble)

  • July 27: Blind & Dirty (jam); ticketed screening of THE GRATEFUL DEAD MOVIE © (1974, 1977. Grateful Dead Productions. All Rights Reserved) follows at the Kimball Theatre at 9:30 p.m.

  • August 3: USAF Rhythm in Blues Jazz Ensemble (jazz)

  • August 10: Army TRADOC Band (classic, march)

  • August 17: USAF Blue Aces Pop Ensemble (classic rock, R&B)

  • August 24: USAF Heritage Brass Ensemble (classical)

  • August 31: Army TRADOC Band (classic, march)

For more information on Merchants Square and other special events visit or call 855-296-6627.

Media Contact:
Joe Straw