Middlebury summer to feature movies and music in the park

MIDDLEBURY — For the second consecutive year, the Better Middlebury Partnership (BMP) has teamed up with the Middlebury Community Music Center to host a summer music series on Wednesday nights in downtown Middlebury. In addition to the concerts that have been offered in the past, the free event series, now called Midd Summer Music & Movies, will include four outdoor film screenings.
The decision to expand the series to include movie screenings came after community members asked for more offerings throughout the summer, according to BMP Marketing Director Karen Duguay. This year, the events will be held at the new college park located at the former site of the municipal building at the corner of South Main and College streets.
Presentations will alternate with a movie one week and a musical performance the next. The first of four concerts will be held on June 28, where guitarist Dayve Huckett will perform with stand-up bass player Art DeQuasie. Huckett, who is also a teacher at the Middlebury Community Music Center, has a rich and diverse style of music, according to Center Director Sadie Brightman.
“At the heart of our mission is encouraging performance,” Brightman said. “We hope to inspire and give students of all ages the experience of seeing the teachers they know and love up there playing their music. It makes it really real for them.”
Brightman said Middlebury Community Music Center is thrilled to be partnering with the BMP to provide another summer of programming that, hopefully, will inspire students to continue performing in the community.
“We’re so excited to be a community partner in the arts in town,” she said. “We really believe in performance as the part of learning music that elevates it beyond something you can enjoy on your own, it becomes something that’s an area for growth and an area for service, where there is sharing and communication — and that’s where the magic really happens.”
The first movie screening will take place on July 5, and will feature the 1987 film “The Princess Bride.” Subsequent film screenings will include “Boss Baby” on July 26, “Shrek” on Aug. 2, and “The Sandlot” on Aug. 16. In the event of inclement weather, the movies will be screened indoors at the Middlebury Rec. Center on Creek Road.
“We wanted to pick movies that would appeal to both kids and adults; nothing too young or too old,” Duguay said. “The BMP board made recommendations based on a list of possible films under our license and chose the most popular picks.”
In order to make the screenings family-friendly, the BMP board chose movies that had an age eight and younger recommendation. However, Duguay said, the BMP encourages adults to use their own discretion when deciding whether or not a film is appropriate for their child. The events are alcohol free and the BMP has asked that all children younger than 12 be accompanied by an adult.
“This is our first year attempting an outdoor movie so we’ll see how it goes. If it goes smoothly and people like it, we’ll definitely do it again and at that point we’ll probably be asking the community for movie recommendations that they’d like to see shown,” Duguay said.
Community members are encouraged to bring food, chairs and blankets to the park. The free events are funded by several local businesses, including The Residence at Otter Creek, Deppman Law, National Bank of Middlebury, Middlebury Eye Associates, Parlour, Lanphere Construction and the Addison Independent.
Duguay is currently in the process of working on a list of specials that will be offered by local restaurants on the evenings when screenings and concerts are held. She said that a few food trucks may also set up shop next to the park on those nights.
For the complete schedule, visit experiencemiddlebury.com, or look for posters throughout town and updates in the pages of the Addison Independent. 

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