The Springfield Botanical Gardens will come to life this fall with live music. Gigs in the Garden, a free outdoor concert series, returns Sundays in October.

Bring your lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy a variety of local and regional performance groups in the Peace Through People Pavilion, located at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park. Concerts start at 2 p.m. and admission is free, with a suggested $10 donation. Beverages are available for purchase from Shakers Mobile Bartending Service.

The Springfield Community Jazz Ensemble kicks off the series on Oct. 2.

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“Robert Holden started the group 13 years ago to help keep big band music alive in the Springfield area,” a press release said. “Their concerts are typically free of charge to help educate the public about jazz and to provide amateur and professional musicians the opportunity to perform jazz.”

Bluegrass takes center stage Oct. 16, with Casey and the Atta Boys.

“They’re an entertaining, forward-moving bluegrass band with roots deep in tradition, willing to move into the unknown,” the press release said. “The group features leader Casey Freeland, Kelly Freeland on vocals and guitar, Andrew Morton on fiddle and vocals, Justin George on banjo, and Becca Sein on vocals and mandolin.”

Other performances at October’s Gigs in the Garden are Justin Larkin (Oct. 9), Deja Crew (Oct. 23) and Kansas-based songwriter John Depew (Oct. 30).

In case of inclement weather, the concerts will move inside the adjacent Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center. Gigs in the Garden is managed by Springfield Sister Cities Association in cooperation with the Springfield-Greene Couty Park Board. For more information visit the Gigs in the Garden website or call 417-864-1191.

Gigs in the Garden Schedule

Oct. 2: Springfield Community Jazz Ensemble

Oct. 9: Justin Larkin

Oct. 16: Casey and the Atta Boys

Oct. 23: Deja Crew

Oct. 30: John Depew

All concerts start at 2 p.m.

Jeff Kessinger

Jeff Kessinger covered sports in southwest Missouri for the better part of 20 years, from young athletes to the pros. The Springfield native and Missouri State University alumnus is thrilled to be doing journalism in the Queen City, helping connect the community with important information. He and wife Jamie daily try to keep a tent on the circus that is a blended family of five kids and three cats. More by Jeff Kessinger