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Celebrate Brooklyn kicks off with Andrew Bird next Friday night!

Forget the solstice — here, the summer officially starts when Celebrate Brooklyn does. And this year, the annual outdoor festival of music, film and dance kicks off on June 10 with a free performance by Andrew Bird.

The Chicago-based songwriter will be toting along his violin, guitar, glockenspiel and cheery whistling to play his visionary folk at the Prospect Park band shell.

“We wanted to mix things up and try something different,” said Jack Walsh, festival producer and the director of performing arts programs for BRIC Arts


Bklyn, which runs Celebrate Brooklyn. “He’s certainly that.”

True, the classically trained multi-instrumentalist is hardly the marquee name like past Celebrate Brooklyn openers, including former headliners Norah Jones and David Byrne, who broke record attendances for the long-running festival. Still, Bird’s a seasoned veteran of such mega-outdoor jams as Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza, so he knows a thing or too about getting the crowd going.

Andrew Bird at Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Park band shell (enter park at Ninth Street and Prospect Park West in Park Slope), June 10 at 8 pm. Free. For info, visit

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