Summer Sounds at Skansie
Families in our region have a dizzying number of options for getting outdoors and sampling great performances. We’ve put together a list of South Sound-area concerts and movies that will get you outside, keep you entertained and, in most cases, not even cost you a penny.
Here's what's happening around the South Sound this summer. If we missed your favorite series, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We'd love to hear about it!
Family-friendly concert series
Kent Summer Concert Series: This series offers a bounty of weekly options from July 10–Aug. 28. Free kid-focused shows happen on Wednesdays, 11 a.m.–noon, at Town Square Park. Other ongoing series are family-friendly and take place in the evenings on Wednesdays at Kent Station, and Thursdays at Lake Meridian Park. Check the scheduled line-up online. FREE. Kent.
Lacey in Tune Summer Concert and Entertainment Series: The city of Lacey also offers more than one outdoor entertainment option. Children's concerts take place Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. and family-friendly concerts are Wednesdays at noon, July 9–Aug. 14, at Huntamer Park. On Saturdays at 7 p.m., July 20–Aug. 10, turn up for a concert followed by a family-friendly movie. Concerts start at 7 p.m. and movies are shown at dusk. Check the schedule of performers and movies online. FREE. Lacey.
Summer Sounds at Skansie: Head to the revamped Skansie Brothers Park in Gig Harbor for live music and restaurant delivery service right to the park. This series runs Tuesdays from 6:30–8 p.m., June 25–Aug. 13. Tip: You can swing by the park and stake out a spot with your camp chairs beginning at 3 p.m. (though your chairs may be moved for safety and set-up). Preview the line-up online. FREE. Gig Harbor.
Auburn Kids’ Summer Stage: Stop by for live performances for kids at Les Gove park Wednesdays at noon from July 10–Aug.14. Magic, reptiles, great kindie bands and more are on the docket.You can bring your swimsuits and visit the nearby spray park after the show. On rainy days, shows are inside the Parks Building. Full line-up available here. FREE. Auburn.
Bonney Lake Kids’ Club: Cruise by Allan Yorke Park for great entertainment two times a week July 8–31. On Mondays at 6:30 p.m. a variety of kids performers are scheduled, including magic, pirate fun, reptiles and more! On Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m., the Tunes @ Tapps series brings live music of varying genres to the park for a great family picnic experience. An outdoor market precedes the Wednesday shows, beginning at 5 p.m. Check the line-up for both series online. FREE. Bonney Lake.
Puyallup Concerts in the Park: Puyallup offers two concert series geared toward families, Tuesdays, noon–1 p.m. and Thursdays at 6:30–8 p.m. The Kiwanis Kids Noon Tunes series runs Tuesdays, July 9–Aug. 20, all at Pioneer Park, except the last show (Aug. 20) which takes place at Bradley Lake Park. The Thursday evening family series runs July 11–Aug. 22 and also occurs at Pioneer Park, again with the final show (Aug. 22) at Bradley Lake Park. Check the full line-up for each series online. FREE. Puyallup.
Second Sunday Concert Series: Tacoma presents concerts in the W.W. Seymour Botanical Conservatory in Wright Park, which is technically indoors, but the music can be heard outdoors in the park. So if the kids need to run around (or be noisy), you can hang outside and still be serenaded. Concerts take place in 2019 on Sundays, July 14, Aug. 11 and Sept. 8. Free to listen outside; suggested donation of $3 to enter the Conservatory. Tacoma.
Music in the Park: Head to Sylvester Park for Olympia's Music in the Park series, which features family-friendly live music acts from a concert band to Latin guitar. Head outside, perhaps with a picnic dinner, and enjoy music in the park, Wednesdays 7 p.m., July 10–Aug. 21. Plus two extra dates at the Port Plaza: July 3 and Aug. 2. Pre-concert youth entertainment begins at 6:30 p.m. FREE. Olympia.
Outdoor summer movies
Lacey Outdoor Cinema Series: Connected to the Lacey In Tune concert series described above, this movie series follows the Saturday evening concerts. Music starts at 7 p.m. and movies play at dusk. Movies run Saturdays, July 20–Aug. 10 in Huntamer Park. FREE. Lacey.
Gig Harbor Movies in the Park: Pack your chairs and blankets to enjoy free family movies at Skansie Brothers Park! Movies are shown at dusk (which is fairly late in early July; earlier as the summer progresses), on Fridays, July 5–Aug. 2. Note: Screenings will be canceled in the event of rain or high wind. FREE. Gig Harbor.
Summer Sounds and Cinema: Live entertainment, kids’ activities plus concessions and food truck fare available, all in advance of movies showing at dusk. Series runs three Fridays, July 26 (at Lea Hill Park), Aug. 2 (at Sunset Park), and Aug. 9 (at Les Gove Park), with pre-movie activities beginning at 7 p.m. and movies showing at dusk (on Aug. 9, pre-movie activities begin earlier, at 6 p.m.). Check the full line-up of entertainment and movie titles online. FREE. Auburn.
Summer Bash and Movies in the Park: Summer Bash events at parks around Tacoma feature Click! Mobile Movies beginning at dusk. Start time of activities varies; check timeline and movie titles online. Movies show Fridays and Saturdays at various locations, July 19–Aug. 23. FREE. Tacoma.
Need more entertainment? Check out our guide to cheap summer movies, as well as our guide to greater Seattle- and Eastside-area outdoor summer performances and movies.
Editor's note: This article was originally published in 2013 and updated in June 2019.