Free Concerts in the Parks of Queens, New York

Summer Nights Full of Music Outdoors

John Mellencamp In Concert - Queens, New York
Emmylou Harris plays an outdoor concert in Queens. Gary Gershoff / Getty Images

Every summer, the parks of Queens, New York, feature some live music events—many of which are free! Whether you are a fan of jazz, country, or rock and roll, you will be able to find a performance to suit your musical tastes. So grab a blanket or a lawn chair and head to the parks for some tunes under the stars. 

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    Cunningham Park

    One of the largest parks in Queens, Cunningham Park is host to many athletic leagues, barbecues, and concerts and theater. Enjoy the sounds of the 60s in  Cunningham Park this summer, Monday, August 7th, 7:30 p.m.-10:00 p.m.

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    Forest Park

    On Thursday, August 10, 7:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m. at the George Seuffert Bandshell in Forest Park, you can relive the Vegas years of Frank, Dean, and Sammy with The Pack is Back: Salute to the Rat Pack. The event is free. The bandshell also features movies under the stars throughout the summer.

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    The beach at Rockaway Beach and Boardwalk are the site of evening concerts throughout the summer. check the Parks' website for times and dates. It's a wonderful way to end a day at the beach, or even find yourself an excuse to check out the beach scene at New York City's biggest (and best) beach.

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    Located at Jacob Riis National Park, the Riis Park Beach Bazaar is the place for music, food, and fun. Open Memorial Day through Labor Day, this "beach party" features several free live concerts—you just need to RSVP online. Check out the calendar for the summer lineup.

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    Roy Wilkins Park in St. Albans is the site of a reggae dancehall extravaganza toward the end of June. The past few years it's been the Groovin in The Park, North America's largest reggae, rhythm, and blues concert. 

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    Gantry Plaza State Park
    Gantry Plaza State Park. Photo (c) John Roleke

    Gantry Plaza State Park is the spot for Tuesday evening concerts on the Long Island City waterfront. From July 11 to August 29, 2017, the concert series, called "Live at the Gantries," brings jazz and blues to the neighborhood park. A highlight of the summer is sure to be "Samba New York!", an evening of lively Brazilian music, on August 1, 2017.

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    Astoria Park
    Astoria Park hosts a summer concert. (c) J. Roleke

    The Central Astoria Development Corporation hosts the Waterfront Concert Series at beautiful Astoria Park. Every Thursday at 7:30 you can enjoy a wide variety of music, from country to jazz to rock and roll—and all concerts are free! (On Monday nights in the summer, it's movie night at Astoria Park with a projection screen set up on the lawn between Hell Gate Bridge and the pool.)

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    Situated where the Harlem and East Rivers meet, this unique park is an interesting spot to enjoy a free summer concert. The summer jazz concert series culminates on Thursday, August 3, 2017, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. with "Hot Lips" Joey Morant performing a tribute to Louis Armstrong. Bringing the whole family? There is a Jazz for Kids pre-show activity at 5:30 p.m. 

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    Located in Astoria and named for the capital of modern Greece, Athens Square Park features live music and dancing—every Tuesday is ​Greek Night, featuring a different musical group. Events are free and begin at 7:00 p.m.

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    Enjoy Summer Sundays in the Park listening to the sounds of classical, bluegrass, Latin jazz, even classic Bollywood. Performances begin at 4:00 p.m. and run through August 20, 2017. The concert series is sponsored by the Jackson Heights Beautification Group.

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    Sunnyside 46th Street Bliss Plaza

    Sunnyside Shines, and organization to beautify and promote Sunnyside's commercial district, hosts concerts every summer Thursday. A highly anticipated performance falls on August 3, 2017, with the Bix Beiderbecke Concert, celebrating a famous Sunnyside local and jazz from the 1920s.