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Concerts, festivals and fireworks coming to the Plaza

Concerts, festivals and fireworks coming to the Plaza

Southside Johnny, The Vaccines and Cracker will be performing as part of Summer at the Plaza, the fr
Concerts, festivals and fireworks coming to the Plaza
Living Colour kicked off last year's Summer at the Plaza. Orleans, The Vaccines and Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes are among the performers coming this summer.
Photographer: Peter R. Barber

Southside Johnny, The Vaccines and Cracker will be performing as part of Summer at the Plaza, the free concert and community event series at the Empire State Plaza.

Events begin June 3 and include free concerts, movies, festivals and fireworks, hosted by the state Office of General Services.

The Summer At The Plaza stage is being moved to the north end of the Plaza, closest to the Capitol, because of ongoing construction on the State Museum staircase. Because the staircase seating will not be available, people are encouraged to bring their own chairs.


Wednesday nights, from 5 to 9 p.m.

June 3: Orleans, the pop-rock band known for its hits from the ’70s: “Still the One” and “Dance With Me.”

Opening: Barrere & Tackett, and Jocelyn Arndt.

June 10: The Vaccines, the London-based indie rock quartet of Justin Young, Árni Hjörvar, Freddie Cowan and Pete Robertson.

Opening: The Features, and Stellar Young.

June 17: Craig Wayne Boyd, the country singer who won season seven of NBC’s “The Voice.”

Opening: Chris Dukes Band

June 24: Maxi Priest, the reggae fusion artist whose hit “Close to You” was the first reggae song to reach No. 1 worldwide.

Opening: Morgan Heritage, and Jemere Morgan.

July 8: Kim Waters, a jazz saxophonist with crossover appeal, four No. 1 albums and 16 Top 10 singles

Opening: Alex Bugnon.


Sat., July 4, 3–10 p.m.: Price Chopper’s New York State’s 4th of July Celebration starring Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes

The annual event features live music and family fun including a naturalization ceremony, dozens of food and craft vendors, activities for kids, and an evening of live entertainment leading up a fireworks extravaganza.

Sat., July 11, Noon–5 p.m.: GE’s Kids Day Sing Along Adventure with Barney

Live music, theater and dance, plus face painting, bounce rides, puppet shows, arts and crafts, animals, and balloons. And that big purple dinosaur.

Sat., Aug. 1, Noon–7 p.m.: The Black Arts and Cultural Festival presented by McDonald’s starring R&B singer Will Downing.

Formerly African American Family Day, the festival is a celebration of the traditions and cultural contributions of the black community through music, art, dance and more.

Wed., Aug. 12, 11 a.m.–9 p.m.

New York State Food Festival presented by Allstate, starring the alt-rock band Cracker

The Food Festival showcases New York producers and specialty products, New York state beers, and the popular Farmers Market.

Sat., Sept. 12, 5–10 p.m.

Hispanic Heritage Celebration presented by SONYMA, starring salsa star Alex Matos

A colorful pageantry of live music, dance, food and family friendly activities.

Wed., Sept. 16, noon–8 p.m.

Plaza at 50 Festival, starring Shadows of the 60’s – A Tribute to Motown Super Groups,

A day full of live entertainment, food, a farmers market featuring New York state products, ending with fireworks

The Plaza at 50 commemoration will also feature a special exhibit at the New York State Museum and a speaker series at The Egg. For more information visit The Empire State Plaza at 50 website.


Family movies screened outdoors, at 8 p.m. on Wednesdays in August.

Aug. 5: “Mary Poppins”

Aug. 19: “Monsters University”

Aug. 26: “Maltese Falcon”


Made in the Shade concerts are held Wednesdays outside in the shadow of The Egg. Bring your lunch while you watch a free show.

June 3 and 10: TBA

June 17: Bhi Bhiman, original folk-rock

June 24: GX3+, flamenco, classical, and bluegrass

July 1: The Wiyos, swing, folk, and old-time blues

July 8: Jeremy Kittle Trio, classical crossover

July 15: Bopitude, modern jazz

July 22: Front Country, contemporary bluegrass

July 29: Brass & Blues, acoustic blues and traditional jazz

Aug. 5: TBA

Aug. 12: Ajkun Ballet Theatre, contemporary dance

Aug. 19: The Revelers,: Cajun, zydeco and swamp pop

Aug. 26: Ellen Sinopoli Dance Company, modern movement

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