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Tips for Attending a Free Summer Concert at L.L. Bean in Freeport, Maine
Maine retailer L.L. Bean has a well-earned reputation for exceeding expectations, and the free L.L. Bean Summer Concert Series at the company's flagship store in Freeport, Maine, is no exception. Not only does L.L. Bean attract top talent like Big Head Todd and the Monsters for this series of evening concerts in Discovery Park, it puts on a good show when it comes to everything from accommodating large crowds to moving traffic out of parking lots at the end of the concert.
In 2015, when we saw Andy Grammer (who you can catch at Tanglewood this summer), the crowd was immense, but his performance still felt so intimate. My daughter even had the chance to give Andy a "high five" as he was taking the stage!
Here are insider tips for attending a concert, along with the L.L. Bean Summer Concert schedule for 2018.Continue to 2 of 4 below.
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L.L. Bean Summer Concert Tips
Want to make the most of your L.L. Bean Summer Concert Series experience? Here are 10 tips for attending a concert based on our visit to Freeport over the 4th of July holiday weekend in 2008, when we saw memorable shows by Toby Lightman and Daryl Hall, and our Labor Day weekend trip in 2015 to see Andy Grammer.
1. Discovery Park, where the L.L. Bean Summer Concert Series is held, is located adjacent to the L.L. Bean flagship store at 95 Main Street in Freeport, Maine.
2. If you're in Freeport early on the day of a concert—or even the night before—you can stake out your spot in front of the stage ahead of time starting at midnight. Don't worry: It's Maine. Nobody will bother your blanket or chairs. Just to be safe, we took old fold-up chairs with us to L.L. Bean, but we were really glad that Kevin Gove, who has done PR work for Maine attractions and lodging properties, clued us in to the fact that many folks claim their space hours before the concert is scheduled to begin. For the Andy Grammer show, we got one of the last ideal spots available at 4 a.m. on the day of the show.
3. Pack a cooler or picnic basket with refreshments. Although there are likely to be vendors on site, and there is a café inside the main L.L. Bean store that sells beverages and treats, it can be a bit tricky to navigate through the crowd to get outside the lawn area in front of the stage once the show begins.
4. Should you require restroom facilities during the concert, you'll find substantially shorter lines at the ladies' and men's rooms inside the neighboring L.L. Bean Home Store than inside the main flagship store. In both stores, restrooms are located on the second floor.
5. Bring a sweatshirt. It can be chilly in Maine after dark, even in the summertime. If you forget—the good news is that you can readily purchase a sweatshirt or fleece inside the L.L. Bean flagship store, as we did for my husband one night. He was actually happy to have an excuse to purchase an L.L. Bean logo-emblazoned souvenir.Continue to 3 of 4 below.
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More Tips for Attending Summer Concerts at L.L. Bean
6. L.L. Bean's summer concerts are definitely family-friendly: My 5-year-old had a blast dancing and clapping along when Daryl Hall played Private Eyes! Just bring a few activities along to keep kids amused before the concert if you plan to arrive early. When pop stars like Andy Grammer are on the schedule, the concerts are teen-friendly, too. High-fiving Andy Grammer was the best thing that happened to my 13-year-old all summer!
7. Arriving late doesn't mean you won't enjoy the show. You may have to stand, however, or even walk around during the concert, as security makes sure exit paths are not blocked.
8. We were so impressed by how quickly we were able to exit the parking lot following each concert. L.L. Bean staffers do an excellent job of moving cars out following the show.
9. Want to stay overnight at a hotel nearby? The Harraseeket Inn and the Hilton Garden Inn Freeport Downtown are both within walking distance of L.L. Bean's Discovery Park. You can also stay a bit farther down Route 1 at the Quality Suites, where you might find a better room rate.
10. L.L. Bean Summer Concert Series shows may be canceled in the event of inclement weather. For the latest schedule updates, call toll free, 877-755-2326.Continue to 4 of 4 below.
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L.L. Bean 2018 Summer Concert Schedule
L.L. Bean Concerts 2018 Summer Schedule
Note: There will be fireworks on the 4th of July at about 9 p.m.
Wednesday, July 4, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 14, 7:30 p.m.
Big Head Todd and the Monsters
Saturday, July 21, 7:30 p.m.
Old Crow Medicine Show
Saturday, July 28, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, August 4, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, September 1, 7:30 p.m.
More 2018 Summer Events in L.L. Bean's Discovery Park include free yoga on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8 to 9 a.m.; the Camp Sunshine Watermelon Festival (August 11) and Dog Days of August with DockDogs (August 25-26).