Summer is here!

With the passing of the first day of summer, and Make Music Upper Perk 2018 having come and gone, all I am really thinking about is sitting on the back porch and reading a good book or two (or three).

But I do have a few outings planned and marked on my calendar; free outdoor concerts, local plays and musicals (at least one of which features on of our MMUP musicians!), maybe a visit to a museum or two…

The Summer Concert Series at the amphitheater at Green Lane Park, Pa continues with Commonwealth Classic Theatre Company presenting “The Complete History of America (Abridged)” – a satirical and fast-paced review of all of American history, from the pre-colonial era to modern day – on Sunday, July 15, 2018 and The Perfect Strangers Band -Berks County’s premier party band, playing high energy dance, rock and pop from the 60’s to today – Sunday, July 29, 2018. Both performances begin at 7 p.m. These events are free and for all ages; bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit on (and maybe a picnic dinner!)

Free outdoor concerts are held very Sunday night in Souderton, PA at the Maurice W. Foulke bandshell in Souderton Park.  Concerts begin at 7 p.m. In Case Of Rain
The Concert will be moved indoors at Indian Crest Middle School at 139 Harleysville Pike. Check directions for details.

If you enjoyed hearing Max Gorman sing Broadway tunes at the YMCA on June 21st (or if you missed him), here’s another chance to see and hear him perform, along with the Playcrafters of Skippack. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Tim Rice and Anthony Lloyd Webber’s first musical!) hits the stage in Skippack on July 12, 13, 14, 20, 21, 22*, 26, 27, 28 (* indicates matinee at 2:00).

A great family friendly musical with familiar themes and catchy music. The plot is based on the story of Joseph, as told in the book of Genesis. Everyone will enjoy this Rice and Webber classic, which has been produced more than 20,000 times.

Muhlenberg Summer Theater is always worth the drive to Allentown, PA. Their first production of the summer is Beauty and the Beast. at Muhlenberg College,
2400 Chew St., Allentown, PA.

And don’t forget about the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival on the DeSales College campus (9 shows over the course of the summer, not all Shakespeare despite the name!), Telford’s DCP Theater; Never Too Late in June, and the musical version of Little Women in August, and Souderton’s Montgomery Theater.

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Today is the day! Make Music Upper Perk begins at 9 a.m.!!!!

Today is the day! June 21st! The first day of summer! The day long celebration of music around the world, and around the Upper Perkiomen Valley!

The music begins at 9 a.m. this morning at Java Bake & Company, 234 Main Street, East Greenville, PA, and the YMCA (1399 Quakertown Road, Pennsburg, PA) joins in at 9:30 a.m.  By 10 a.m. the music will have spread to Red Hill to the Upper Perkiomen Library (350 Main Street), and by 10:30 musicians will have set up shop and be playing at Upper Perk Thrift Shop (301 4th Street, Pennsburg) and The Center at Open Link (517 Jefferson Street, East Greenville). At 11 a.m. you can continue your travels around the Upper Perkiomen Valley and hear music at M&J Gourmet (1267 Quakertown Ave aka 663 at Shady Nook, Pennsburg, PA) and at Diehl’s Real Teas on Main Street in East Greenville.

By noon, live music (all free and all open to the public, as are all Make Music Upper Perk events!) will also be playing outside Mario’s Pizza on Main Street in East Greenville, upstairs at the Schwenkfelder Library and Heritage Center on Seminary Avenue in Pennsburg, and at several popular lunchtime spots; the WingMan in East Greenville, Chiaro’s in Green Lane, and Kaufman House in Sumneytown!

Beginning at 3 p.m. in the afternoon, Art on Main (218 Main Street, East Greenville) will be showcasing musicians from wide and far, from Africa (Tshila from Uganda starts off the day there) to Pennsburg locals. Contemporary Christian Music singers from Camp Men-O-Lan will be performing by the gazebo on the lawn at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church (81 Main Street, Pennsburg) at 4 p.m. followed by the annual Hymn Sing at 4 p.m. that everyone can join in (led by Howard Holtje – hymnbooks provided). The Porch at Pennsburg UCC  (775 Main St, Pennsburg) becomes a stage at 5 p.m., with the Summer Solstice Community Drum Circle setting up on the lawn next to the porch at 7:30 p.m.

Not to be left out, Bike & Sol (104 Main St., East Greenville) will be hosting a few bands beginning at 7 p.m. tonight.

The complete program for today’s musical performances, along with a map of locations around the Upper Perkiomen Valley is available online, in last week’s Town and Country, and on flyers that are posted and and can be picked up at various locations around the towns. You can also track down your favorite musicians!

Remember, everything is free and open to the public. And if you feel like singing, there are two campfire sing-alongs at 9 p.m. tonight – one at Pennsburg UCC and one at the New Goshenhoppen Park on 3rd Street.

In case of rain, the outside venues will move the performers inside (performances scheduled for St. Mark’s Lawn and Gazebo will move to the bandstand at New Goshenhoppen Park, 3rd Street, East Greenville, PA).

Oh, and be on the lookout for “pop up performances” taking place at previously unannounced and unexpected places around the area!

Enjoy the first day of summer, the longest day of the year, at this year’s Make Music Upper Perk!

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“Make Music” Week!

Don’t wait until Thursday, June 21st, to start celebrating Make Music Upper Perk – preview musical events are happening in town this Saturday and Sunday!

Start with the 2nd annual Songwriters Showcase Brunch at Diehl’s Real Teas, 231 Main Street, East Greenville, PA – noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 16, 2018.

It’s a great chance to hear talented local songwriters share their unique songs… a perfect chance to hear creative and talented local songwriters in a venue that is great for listening.  Add the awesome menu at Diehl’s Real Teas – teas and coffees from around the world, tisanes, wellness teas, smoothies … creative crepes, paninis, soups, etc. –  and it’s a perfect Saturday Brunch.  This exciting MMUP 2018 event will be a great way to get ready for the big MMUP 2018 celebration on the 21st.  The event will be hosted by local singer-songwriter Tom Cooney  We hope to see you there!

On Sunday, June 17th, Progressive Christian songwriter Bryan Sirchio is presenting a free concert at New Goshenhoppen United Church of Christ (1070 Church Road, East Greenville, PA) in the sanctuary, beginning at 6 p.m. All are welcome to this Make Music Upper Perk preview event.

The main event, featuring 13 hours of live music in over 17 places all around the Upper Perkiomen Valley, will be held rain or shine, inside and outside, on Thursday, June 21, 2018. There will even be a few unannounced pop up performances not on the map that day – so keep your eyes and ears open as you go about your day! You can plan your day based on the musicians you’d like to hear, or by program time and location. Paper copies of the schedule may be found at most venue locations, local churches, borough buildings, and more, and will be printed in this week’s Town and Country newspaper (June 14, 2018 edition).

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Free Blues, Brews & BBQ Festival today!

From noon to 10 p.m. today (Saturday, June 9th) Allentown has closed off downtown Hamilton Street from 5th to 9th Street for the annual, free and open to the public, Blues, Brews & Barbecue Festival.

There are 6 stages with live music featuring blues artists from across the country and across town, 3 dozen food vendors, and 50 craft and non-food stands. A free Kids Arts Experience will be set up in front of Gallery of the Walk on 6th Street and Hamilton, Allentown, PA.

Food and drink stands will accept cash only. There is no entrance fee to the festival. Map and schedule of performances are online.

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Art Studio Tours (in our neighborhood!) (and beyond…)

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This weekend, take advantage of the 21 Studios Montgomery County Tour and check out the artists’ studios at your own pace as these places are opened to the public, free of charge, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 9th, and 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Sunday, June 10, 2018. 52 artists will be displaying their work at 21 locations around the county, including in Green Lane, Souderton, and Pottstown, PA.

Local painters Bradley Hendershot and Katherine Krieg are opening up their studio, Hoppenville House at 5455 Hoppenville Road, Green Lane, PA and showcasing not just their wonderful workspace on their very scenic backwoods property, but also their watercolors and oil paintings of sites in Pennsylvania and Monhegan Island, Maine.

Down the road in Souderton, three artists will be at the Boardman Studio (105 N. Main Street); painter Henry Boardman, ceramicist Jessica Greet, painter Marie Wolfington Jones, and Robert Rende who works in both mixed media and paint.

Three studios on the tour are located in Pottstown, PA. The Lisa Muller Studio is at 12 East 5th Street and contains work by two painters and one mixed media artist; Lisa Muller, Annie Patrizi, and Polly Davis Chalfont.

The Jeanne Petrosky Studio can be found in Suite 1 at 243 Jefferson Street in Pottstown. Jeanne Petrosky  works in mixed media creating hand made paper art along with her partner “in art and marriage,” Dennis Guzenski. Other artists whose work is on the walls at this studio is painter/printmaker Catherine Colsher  and sculptor Bob Hakun whose art is composed of, among other things, “old, discarded items: some natural like bones or wood; some man made-like wheels or wire. ”

Pottstown’s last stop as part of this weekend’s open studio tour is at Art Fusion 19464, 341 Beech Street, at Lee Pohlsander’s Studio, where five artists will be on hand, as will their work.  Four painters with four different styles; Lee Pohlsander, Sandy AlvesLiz Griesser, and Brooke Steytler  share the space with sculptor and wood turner Jack Hanson.

If you are interested and willing to drive a bit farther, you can go to the main page of 21 Studios Montgomery County Tour  and click on the different artists’ links for the addresses and maps showing the locations of their studios so that you can continue to “Meet the Artists this Weekend” in Montgomery County.

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Steve Walker at Godfrey Daniels on Saturday

We just heard from folk singer and songwriter Steve Walker (who will be once again performing at Make Music Upper Perk on June 21st), that he will be opening at Godfrey Daniels (7 E. 4th St., Bethlehem, PA) tomorrow, Saturday, May 26, 2018.
This Saturday night, 5/26, I have the honor of opening the Show at Godfrey Daniels,
one of the most renown and longest running folk clubs in existence. The featured performer is the legendary Roy Book Binder, one of the finest ragtime and blues fingerstyle guitarist and storyteller in the world. I will also be mixing sound and MC, so come see if i can juggle triple duty.
Godfreys is at 7 E. 4th St, Bethlehem, PA, and you can reserve your seat now online at
(And it looks like one of my other favorite folk singers, Christine Lavin, will be playing at Godfrey Daniels later in the week, on Thursday, May 31st!)
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Free Music Festivals and Concerts this Weekend (and a few beyond)

Starting tomorrow, Friday, May 25th, 2018, check out two free music festivals in Allentown; Mayfair Festival of the Arts – a 30 year celebration that will be held in a new location this year at Cedar Crest College (100 College Drive Ave, Allentown, PA; noon to 10 p.m. Friday – Sunday), and the Great Pennsylvania Music & Arts Celebration – new this year, at the Allentown Fairgrounds (17th and Chew Streets, Allentown, PA – 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. on Monday). Both events have outdoor and indoor live music featuring local and national groups and individual musicians, and artists’ markets, along with other activities, performances, and food.

Of special note, some Make Music Upper Perk musicians will be performing at the Great Pennsylvania Music & Arts Celebration:

Saturday night

  • Acoustic Blues Project (Earl Andrews)    5:00 pm – 5:45 pm


Monday night

  • Tom & Betty Druckenmiller w/ Norm Williams 6:00 pm – 7:15 pm


Commemorate Memorial Day with music by attending the Saturday evening concert, The Music of World War Iat 7 p.m. on May 26, 2018, in Harleysville at the Church of the Holy Spirit (2871 Barndt Road). Performing the music will be The BLT Trio; Keoni Bolding (violin), Peter Lockman (cello), and Seth Trumbore (piano). Free will offering and reception to follow concert.

Looking ahead, next Saturday on June 2nd, the annual Strawberry Festival at New Goshenhoppen Park (3rd Street, East Greenville, Pa) begins with craft tables, flea market, and breakfast at 8 a.m., continues with an auction at 10 a.m., followed by games and activities culminating with Red Hill Band concert from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. There is no admission charge to this event.

The acoustic band Lazy Sundays will be playing at the Church of the Holy Spirit (2871 Barndt Road, Harleysville, PA) on Saturday evening, June 2, 2018, beginning at 7 p.m.  Free will offering and “strawberry festival reception” to follow.

And Sunday night, June 3rd, the Pennsylvania Philharmonic classical concert begins at 6 p .m. and will be held at the Steel River Playhouse, 245 E. High Street, Pottstown, PA. Admission is free (though RSVP’s are requested as space is limited).

This public concert will feature members from the Philharmonic’s incredible Brass section and explore next season’s educational program. With music from John Williams, Holst, Gershwin, and Copland (and much more), there will be something for everyone to enjoy. Our 2018-2019 season, titled “Reach for the Stars,” offers an exciting space exploration theme, highlighting the history of American innovation, courage, and perseverance.

And everyone should have marked Thursday, June 21st for this year’s Make Music Upper Perk!

Posted in art shows, concerts, craft fairs, festivals, for children, local artists, local musicians, Make Music Upper Perk, MMUP News, weekend highlights | Leave a comment