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Photos: Artists grateful for return of Port Coquitlam's Music in the Park

Dozens bask in the sounds of Port Coquitlam's summer showcase in Lions Park, the first since the COVID-19 pandemic.

Residents and visitors to Port Coquitlam's Lions Park listened to musicians' soulful voices while relaxing under the shelter of trees on a warm sunny Saturday (July 29).

Artists based out of Metro Vancouver performed live for dozens as PoCo welcomed back its Music in the Park series for the first time since gathering restrictions lifted from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The free summer concert series hopes to provide an avenue for families to enjoy the community as part of the city's seasonal engagement.

The intimate setting is also personally meaningful to the artists themselves, including Adrienne Robles.

She said she's grateful for the opportunity to showcase her talents on another pop-up platform, but, simply put, it's also about having fun.

"It's really heartwarming. We love doing this kind of thing, especially for the city," she explained in an interview with the Tri-City News.

"Just bringing that connection; it's so great that people are a part of this, part of a community, and just to be together."

Robles, who plays a variety of genres like soul, funk, pop and R&B, has performed on community stages like Music in the Park for nearly 10 years with her partnering guitarist, D.R.

She believes that music, combined with the elements surrounding a listener, can engage in mental and physical healing.

And with PoCo's first show of this calibre since the pandemic, which took a heavy toll on many, she hopes all the artists involved can be of some comfort for those that attend.

"It's giving back to the community in any way that we can and music says we [can] use it that way."

Robles was the middle act on Saturday, following R&B singer/songwriter Ashley Pater and preceding Juno Award-nominated percussionist Robin Layne.

Music in the Park's second and final concert is slated for Aug. 12 from 2 to 5 p.m. in Lions Park (2300 Lions Way).

Interested patrons are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets, as well as umbrellas as the show will take place rain or shine.

For more information, you can visit the City of Port Coquitlam's website.

The Aug. 12 performers are as follows:

Gustavo Herrero Tenor and Band — Latin music

  • Born in Mexico City, Gustavo Herrera immigrated to Vancouver in 2007. Possessing a Tenor voice and passion for singing, he began to study opera at the age of 16. Since 2012, Herrera and his band have focused their music on the popular style and performances as "Canadian-Latino Pop Tenor" in Vancouver, singing all kind of Latin music and even including many performances as Solo singer with Mariachi Band.
Latin pop tenor Gustavo Herrera is one of six performers to headline Port Coquitlam's 2023 Music in the Park series. By Gustavo Herrera

The Penny Pom Pom Show — Folk music

  • A magical place filled with art and music, created by lifelong performer and Canadian Folk Music Award nominee Jessica Mai, Penny Pom Pom is a colourful ball of energy who is always looking for new ways to create. She sings, she paints, she tells stories and she is always having fun.
Children's entertainer Jessica Mai, aka Penny Pom Pom, is one of six performers to headline Port Coquitlam's 2023 Music in the Park series. By Penny Pom Pom

Bakara Band — Persian pop music

  • Bakara Band's members have previously accompanied international Persian pop music stars and came together to create a skilled and high-energy music group.
Persian pop group Bakara Band is one of six performers to headline Port Coquitlam's 2023 Music in the Park series. By Bakara Band