IT'S easy for locals to take for granted the parks and gardens that make the rest of Australia swoon.
So throughout January and February, Toowoomba Regional Council's free Summer Tunes gives residents (and tourists) an extra reason to get out and enjoy their parklands every Sunday.
"Summer Tunes are as much a part of summer as cicadas, sizzling barbecues, backyard cricket and the whirr of lawn mowers," TRC Tourism and Events portfolio leader Cr Geoff McDonald said.
Weekly performances are at four of Toowoomba's premier parks ̶ Picnic Point bandstand, Laurel Bank Park shade area, Newtown Park State Rose Garden and near the Margaret St play area in Queens Park.
"Regional audiences in Oakey, Crows Nest, Millmerran, Pittsworth, and Goombungee plus, for the first time, Cambooya, will be treated to musical afternoons starting from the end of January," Cr McDonald said.
He encouraged everyone to plan at least one morning or afternoon out with their kids or grandkids, or to pack a picnic basket and roll out a picnic blanket with friends and listen to the range of talented local performers covering a variety of genres from jazz to swing, brass bands to strings, country to rock 'n' roll, and blues to the sounds of the '60s to the '80s.
Each area has a theme, with Queens Park's morning session (10am-noon) appropriately titled Children's Capers.
Afternoon sessions (noon to 3pm) at the other parks are titled The Big Bands at Picnic Point, Picnic Pleasures at Laurel Bank Park and Music Around the Roses, with a distinctly folk/country/bush influence, at Newton Park.
See the full Regional Summer Tunes Program on our What's On page, and for full details of the entire program go to www.tr.qld.gov.au/summertunes.