Summer concert sublimity

Attendees enjoy music, weather and giant purple slide

By Tyler Leeds / The Bulletin

Upcoming shows

There are three remaining installments of the Bend Memorial Clinic Free Summer Sunday Concert series. All shows begin at 2:30 p.m. and end by 4:30 p.m.

Sunday: The Weather Machine

July 20: The Ballroom Thieves

July 27: Dakota Brown Band

The scent of sunscreen blew across the Les Schwab Amphitheater lawn on a breezy and hot Sunday as the L.A.-based Cerny Brothers played a free show from their Americana-leaning songbook.

Before beginning the set, the band intoned, “Let’s do this; let’s be happy.” The crowd, enjoying the third in a series of six free summer concerts, seemed to abide, lounging comfortably on all varieties of outdoor chairs and picnic blankets. In the nearby Deschutes River, a few kayakers even took in the show, attempting to slow down in the river long enough to hear a few songs.

For Francois and Char Evnick, a couple from Calgary, the concert was a serendipitous discovery made while trying to locate a spot to enter the river with their two children on a small inflatable boat.

“We were just parking right nearby and someone told us it was going on,” said Francois, 39, as he ate lunch with his family under a tree. “It was a complete fluke that we ended up here.”

“But I’m glad we found it,” added Char, 44. “We’re here for the mountain biking and the beer, and we’re just so impressed with everything going on.”

Near the back of the lawn, Susy Eckerle, 42, who recently moved to Bend from Southern California, watched as her son slid down a two-story, inflatable, purple slide meant to resemble a tornado.

“We came here for both the music and the slide,” she said. “It’s a family event and it’s just so beautiful out.”

Sitting in a chair at the western edge of the venue, Cathy Mathews, 47, said she was happy to have some time to relax alone before heading home to the Bay Area following a busy family vacation.

“I think we have eaten and drank everything Bend has to offer over the past few days,” she said, laughing. “I love anything bluegrass and so I just decided to head on down and enjoy it. Without the breeze, it may be too hot, but right now, it’s just perfect and great to be here.”

— Reporter: 541-633-2160, tleeds@bendbulletin.com