Independence Day falls midweek this year, but you can start the celebration early with a number of notable weekend events in the Portsmouth area. Here are a few of the highlights.
The Who’s Tommy
Local theater eccentrics The Mad Men of Oopsie Daisey Inc. are cooking up a production with ingredients including a classic rock opera, a Tony Award-winning musical, a seven-piece rock band, a team of designers, and a cast of top-notch actors. “The Who’s Tommy,” based on The Who’s 1969 album and adapted for the stage by Des McAnuff, takes the stage at the Seacoast Repertory Theatre in Portsmouth from June 29 to July 29. Tickets are $20-$38; learn more here.
Musicians from Boston, New York, and Tampa will join local performers at Henry Law Park in Dover on Saturday, June 30, for the Southern New Hampshire Ukulele Group’s third annual ukulele festival. Guests are invited to bring along their own ukes to participate in jam sessions throughout the day and hop on stage in an attempt to break the unofficial state strumming record. The free event takes place from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; learn more here.
Sheafe Warehouse Summer Exhibit
The New Hampshire Art Association (NHHA) opens its annual summer exhibit at the Sheafe Warehouse in Portsmouth with a reception on Saturday, June 30, from 5-7 p.m. This year’s exhibit features small works in all media by 50 different NHAA members, all housed within the historic waterfront structure in Prescott Park. There will also be art demos and children’s activities on select dates throughout the summer. The show runs through Aug. 26; for more information, click here.
Summer in the Street
Pro Portsmouth kicks off its 16th annual Summer in the Street series with a live concert by the Seacoast Wind Ensemble on Saturday, June 30. The 50-piece symphonic band will perform arrangements of American classics and patriotic favorites. The series continues with different acts every Saturday evening through July 28. All shows take place from 5:30-9 p.m. on Pleasant Street in downtown Portsmouth, a portion of which will be closed to traffic. For more information, click here.
An American Celebration
Fourth of July festivities get underway early at Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth. Now in its 16th year, “An American Celebration” begins on Sunday, July 1, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. A huge assembly of re-enactors and living history performers will offer historic interpretations throughout the day. The event is free with regular museum admission. The celebration continues on Tuesday and Wednesday, July 3 and 4. (The Portsmouth Pops Extravaganza also is July 3.) Learn more here.
For a full calendar of local events, click here.