Lineup is set for the long-running outdoor music series' 35th season
On this date in 1979: The Doobie Brothers were about to hit No. 1 on the pop charts, crashing the disco era with their soulful smash "What a Fool Believes." The B-52s were putting the finishing touches on their classic debut record — packed with party favorites like "Rock Lobster" and "Dance This Mess Around." "Weird Al" Yankovic was practicing accordion, listening to Dr. Demento and contemplating an unlikely career path; his first single, "My Bologna," would come out later in the year. And the Oregon Zoo was making preparations to host its first summer concert series.
Everything old is new again, it seems. This year, the zoo concert series celebrates its 35th year with a diverse lineup featuring all those artists and more. Tickets go on sale April 26 at 10 a.m. and can be purchased in person at the zoo or online at zooconcerts.com.
"Nothing says summer in Portland like a warm evening on the zoo concert lawn, listening to some amazing music," said Kim Smith, zoo director. "And the best part is these concerts benefit the zoo's programs for animal welfare, education and conservation. I'm really excited about the concert lineup this year. We've tried to include something for just about every musical taste."
- Saturday, June 22: John Prine
- Saturday, June 29: Old Crow Medicine Show
- Sunday, June 30: Ziggy Marley
- Saturday, July 6: Huey Lewis and the News
- Sunday, July 7: the B-52s and the Go-Go’s
- Thursday, July 18: “Weird Al” Yankovic
- Friday, July 26: Randy Newman
- Saturday, July 27: Leann Rimes
- Sunday, July 28: Indigo Girls
- Saturday, Aug. 3: Lyle Lovett and His Large Band
- Sunday, Aug. 4: Trombone Shorty with JJ Grey & Mofro
- Thursday, Aug. 8: Lee Brice
- Saturday, Aug. 10: Todd Snider/Shawn Mullins/Hayes Carll/Sarah Jarosz
- Friday, Aug. 16: Los Lobos and Los Lonely Boys
- Sunday, Aug. 25: Chris Isaak
- Friday, Sept. 6: the Doobie Brothers
Music fans who wish to purchase tickets early may do so starting April 23 by becoming a zoo member before that date. Non-members can receive a code to purchase tickets starting April 24 by becoming a fan on the zoo's Facebook page or following the zoo on Twitter.
In a new offering this year, concert tickets will be good for zoo admission all day on the date of the show. Concerts begin at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted; not every show has an opening act, so fans should make sure to arrive on time to make sure they don't miss part of the show.
Later this spring, officials will announce the lineup for Sunset at the Zoo, the popular evening series that debuted last summer as an expansion of the zoo's traditional Wednesday concerts. Free for zoo members, Sunset at the Zoo offers a feel-good festival vibe, with live music from local artists, family-friendly activities and the chance to get to know animals that are active during twilight hours.
In 1979, the Oregon Zoo became the first in America to host a summer concert series. Now, the series is one of the top outdoor events in the Northwest, and is the region's longest continuously running outdoor series.