Ann Arbor Summer Festival

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Looking for some new and unique music or art this summer? Check out the 30th Ann Arbor Summer Festival! Held at Ingalls Mall, Power Center and Hill Auditorium, this three-week festival offers over 140 concerts and events. The dates are June 13-July 6, 2014.

For families, the outdoor program (at Ingalls) is a favorite. There's a variety of free concerts, movies under the stars, open-air shows and more. A sampling? The Kids Rock series features the Dirty Sock Funtime Band June 15. Or meet Spontaneous Art's alien robots and talking flowers June 18, 25 and July 2. The zany French drummers of Transe Express: Les Tambours create a huge outdoor party June 27. And be sure to see the classic The Wizard of Oz on July 6.

In 2014, the huge family draw is Architects of Air: Miracoco: a giant, blow-up, walk-through sculpture – inspired by a temple in India. It happens June 19-22 only. There is a fee for this attraction: $10/visitor, free/kids under 3 with adults. Note that historically, wait times can exceed one hour, so be sure to plan ahead!

Want even more kids' fun? KidZone returns 5-8:30 p.m. on various dates, too, with lots of themes – from pasta necklace-making with Ann Arbor Art Center on June 18 to global instrument fun with the U of M Center for World Music on July 2. While most of these events are free, some, including Body Masterpiece face painting ($5, June 14-16) have fees.

There's also plenty to see on the indoor stages (at Power and Hill), including music, dance theater and comedy performances. The bill ranges from alt-rockers CAKE and comedian Lily Tomlin to political funny troupe The Capitol Steps.

Outdoor shows are free, but indoor show tickets costs range. Show times vary by day and performance. Note that children under 3 aren't admitted to indoor shows.

Since 1984, the Ann Arbor Summer Festival has become a celebration of all kinds of music and performance art, but aspires to be a world-renowned multi-arts festival. And it's right in your backyard.

For more information about the 30th annual Ann Arbor Summer Festival, in 2014, check out the Metro Parent calendar listing.

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