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Thousands rock and roll out to first Concerts in the Park event of 2013

Posted: July 7, 2013 2:00 a.m.
Updated: July 7, 2013 2:00 a.m.

Mary Brunty, left, and Keith Williams dance to the music as Queen Nation performs onstage during the first in the of the 2013 Concert in the Parks series held at Central Park in Saugus on Saturday.

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With the opening strains of the song “Flash” blaring and the roar of thousands gathered at Santa Clarita’s Central Park, the Queen tribute band Queen Nation officially kicked off the 2013 Concerts in the Park series Saturday night.

Thousands of people lugged ice chests, blankets and tents to the park to scope out a choice spot near the stage before the event began.

Finding a good parking spot was an equally challenging affair, as cars were parked along Bouquet Canyon Road from Seco Canyon Road to Centurion Way a half-hour before the concert even began.

The concert had a festive atmosphere as groups of friends gathered on blankets or under tents to talk, drink and eat before the music began.

Valencia residents Mark Denton and Lisa Drago-Denton said they attend the event almost every year and have a potluck with friends.

“We get to hang out with our friends, who we haven’t seen in a while,” said Mark Denton about the event.
Canyon Country resident Greg Pope, another member of the group, said the event provides a good excuse to get everyone together.

“The music is like a side part,” he said. “It’s like having a cherry on top of your sundae. It’s still a sundae without the cherry but with it, it is better.”

As the members of Queen Nation began their first song, “Tie Your Mother Down,” attendees flocked near the stage, raising their hands up and dancing to the music.

Those furthest away from the stage, though a little more reserved, bobbed their heads and tapped their feet along with the beat.

Saturday’s event is the first of eight weekly shows throughout the summer, with the last concert on Aug. 24. City officials estimate that several thousand residents turn out for each of the concerts, though the crowd on hand Saturday was larger even than that.

Duane Harte, a member of the Santa Clarita Parks, Recreation and Community Services Commission, estimated that as many as 10,000 or 11,000 people had turned out for the event.

The next concert will be held July 13 and feature the band “Poor Man’s Poison.” All concerts are held at Central Park in Saugus and begin at 7 p.m.

—Mallory Fencil contributed reporting to this story.
On Twitter @LukeMMoney


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