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Sellwood has its free concerts in the park in July; Ardenwald's are every August

DAVID F. ASHTON - As part of the Ardenwald-Johnson Creek Neighborhood Association National Night Out celebration, Milwaukie Police Officer Hector Campos gives a sticker to Caleb Anderson. In keeping with its longtime summertime tradition, the Ardenwald-Johnson Creek Neighborhood Association kicked off an August summer concert series in Ardenwald Park, on Thursday evening, August 3.

While much of the neighborhood is located in Clackamas County and within the City of Milwaukie, the north-end Ardenwald Park where the series of five concerts is held is situated in the City of Portland, and in Multnomah County.

"We try to get everyone to come a little early on the first night, because we're also celebrating 'National Night Out Against Crime', featuring police officers and community safety information, before the music begins," explained Ardenwald-Johnson Creek Neighborhood Association Chair Jeff Davis. "It's good to be mindful of crime prevention; and having events like these helps neighbors to stay in touch with each other, so they can look out for each other.

"Due to the excessive heat this evening, we may have a bit smaller turnout until the temperatures cool down – hopefully, soon," Davis told THE BEE.

There being five Thursdays in August this year, the neighborhood offered five evening concerts – starting with The Pearls, an "alt-country-and-western swing band". This was followed up the following week by Greydogz, a band mixing blues, jazz and swing music; on the third Thursday, the fiery salsa and Latin jazz sextet Pa'lante; on the fourth Thursday, the three-piece "indie/punk" band, The Junebugs; and to complete the month on August 31, a performance by The Libertine Belles, with "retro-swing" music.

"We have local restaurants here providing food, and Hope City Church is serving free ice cream today; and they're bringing a kids' Bounce House to the other concerts," Davis said.

Even on that hot August 3rd afternoon, some 100 people had already gathered in the park, as the band began to play.

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