Given how long and cold Rockford winters can be, most of us try to spend as much time as we can outdoors during the summer season. We play outside, work outside, cook outside, and on Tuesday evenings, we get to listen to some really great music outside.

Rockford is a great music town (there's a rumor that we have a hall-of-fame rock band from around these parts) that has produced some prodigious talent in many different genres, and continues to draw top talent from around the country.

Tonight would be a perfect opportunity to catch some of the home-grown talent at Sinnissippi Park Music Shell, 1401 N. 2nd Street. As part of their "Sounds of Summer" series, the Rockford Concert Band will take the stage at 7pm for their "Sounds of Stage and Screen" concert. Admission, as always, is free. The Sounds of Summer continues Thursday night at 7pm with Artists Ensemble.

Another musical option on a Rockford Tuesday evening would be to head over to Anderson Japanese Gardens, 318 Spring Creek Road, for their "Tuesday Evening in the Gardens" series.

Tuesday Evening in the Gardens is free to Anderson Japanese Garden members, or the cost of regular garden admission to non-members. Doors open at 5pm, with the performances beginning at 5:45pm. It's a lot of fun, with food and drink available for purchase, and the fact that it's appropriate for the whole family, plus you get out at a very reasonable time (on a work night) makes Tuesday Evening in the Gardens a real winner.

Tonight's performers are Nashville artist Liz Longley, with opening act Fendrick and Peck.

For more information on the Rockford Park District's Sounds of Summer concert series, click here.

For more on Anderson Japanese Gardens' Tuesday Evening in the Gardens, click here.