Highland’s Village Green hosts Thursday-evening pop, rock & doo-wop summer concerts


“Queen of Hearts” Cynthia Walker dances to The Shallow Oldies Band, along with longtime Highland realtor Dolly Decker and Highland Rotary Club member Sue Naglieri. (photo by Lauren Thomas)

What gets better than free live music on a beautiful summer evening in the heart of your hometown? The Town of Lloyd’s moving-and-grooving volunteer Events Committee has brought the increasingly popular and well-attended “Highland Pop, Rock & Doo-Wop Summer Concert Series” to the Village Green in the heart of downtown.

Last Thursday night the concert series showcased the Shallows Band, a great four-piece oldies group that had the crowd rocking to Motown, as well as ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s tunes like “Sweet Caroline” and “The Wanderer.”

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Kate Jonietz, secretary to town supervisor Paul Hansut and also the chairperson of the town’s Events Committee, worked with several people to bring this series about, including Joe Indelicato. After running unsuccessfully for a slot on the Town Board, Indelicato was still passionate to find a way to improve the quality of life for his town. “I saw a series like this in Newburgh and thought, ‘What a wonderful thing it would be to bring to Highland!’” he said. “It’s a great, free thing for families and young people, couples and seniors, and it’s right here in the heart of our town!”

The Events Committee hooked up with the Ferry Godmother Music Circuit (www.ferrygodmother.com), run by the effervescent Aquanetta Wright, and through donations and sponsorships from local businesses and individuals was able to put on a ten-week music series for the entire town to enjoy. The music is varied and has included African dancing and drumming, the Belly Warmers and the Five Creations, and will soon host the Pony Tails, the Corner Shot Band, the Gordon Michaels Trio and an old-time Sock Hop dance party for its closing night on August 30. To learn more about each band and when they’re scheduled, go to www.highlandpoprockdoowopseries.com.

Cynthia Walker, an elegant young woman who was dancing around the field in an evening gown and is Aquanetta’s right-hand gal working as the program director, said that the concert series is a real boon to Highland because “It’s free, it is bringing people in the community together, it is bringing the business community together, it’s great for families and children and it’s a way of bringing back music you might not have heard in a while without having to go to New York City. You can have quality bands right here in your hometown!”

“We are very happy that the Ferry Godmother chose Highland for her incredible concert series,” said supervisor Paul Hansut, who was enjoying the show with friends and family. “And I’m very grateful to all of our sponsors showing up to make this a huge success.”

Jennifer Fazio and her granddaughter Norali Hanley, 7, were eating pizza and enjoying the music, Hanley twirling and dancing away. “It’s so nice to be able to hear good music outside on a gorgeous summer night and relax,” said Fazio. “I think this is just another steppingstone for better and better things to come for Lloyd,” said Franco Zani.

The series runs every Thursday night beginning at 6:30 p.m. and runs until 8:30 p.m. Check the website to find out what band will be playing and if there is inclement weather.

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