Downtown musical salute to Freeport concert series will highlight patriotic celebration
Port Washington’s Fourth of July celebration will be expanded this year with the addition of the Freeport Music Series festival.
To accommodate the Friday festival, which will be held on the south end of Franklin Street, the route for the annual 11 a.m. parade has been changed.
It will start at the corner of Main and Franklin streets, head north on Franklin to Pier Street, east to Lake Street, then north to Veterans Memorial Park.
Following the parade, decorated bikes, wagons and scooters will be judged at the park bandshell.
Kits for decorating bikes are available at Port Washington State Bank’s downtown Port branch.
A bounce house, watermelon seed-spitting contest, music by Will Pfrang and Mackenzie Pauly, food and beverages will be featured in the park until about 2:30 p.m., when the music festival kicks off.
The festival, which is being held in honor of the Freeport Music Series’ 10th anniversary, runs from 2:30 to 9:30 p.m. and features headline acts The Smithereens and Sam Llanas, formerly of the BoDeans.
The lineup also includes Pfrang, Tommy Keene and Familiar Looking Strangers.
Opening the festival will be Pfrang, a Port Washington singer-songwriter who will perform at 2:30 p.m.
Pfrang has attended the Rocky Mountain Song School and Folks Festival, and has been performing throughout the area for several years.
Keene, a guitarist, singer and songwriter, will perform at 3:30 p.m.
His 1984 extended-play recording garnered a four-star review in Rolling Stone magazine and was one of the year’s top independent releases. He’s recorded 10 albums and performed with Velvet Rush and on recordings by the Goo Goo Dolls.
Familiar Looking Strangers, a band hailing from Liverpool, England, will play at 5 p.m.
The band, which has performed in the area the past couple years, is expected to release new music this year.
Llanas, who will take the stage at 6:30 p.m., is a singer, acoustic guitarist and songwriter who is known for his distinctive voice. He founded Absinthe with Milwaukee musicians Jim Eannelli and Guy Hoffman, formerly of the Violent Femmes.
He is expected to release a new studio recording, “The Whole Night Thru,” this summer.
The Smithereens, a band that was big in the 1980s and early 1990s, will be the headliner, performing from 8 p.m. until the close of the event.
The band, one of the bigger MTV groups, released its first album, “Especially for You,” in 1986. That album included “Blood and Roses” and “Behind the Wall of Sleep.”
The band’s other hits include “Only a Memory,” “House We Used to Live In,” “Drown in My Own Tears” and “A Girl Like You.”
Food and beverages will be available for purchase at the celebration.
Closing the day will be the traditional fireworks show at dusk, with the pyrotechnics being shot off from Coal Dock Park.
For more information on the concert, visit www.freeportmusic.org or call the Port Washington Parks and Recreation Department at 284-5881.