On the F Line

This Summer, Take The F Train To Dolly Parton, Paul Simon & Bob Dylan

Peter McCarthy
1964 Concert Schedule for Forest Hills Stadium
1964 Concert Schedule for Forest Hills Stadium
Photo Credit: Wikipedia (Public Domain)

No driving, no parking, no hassle. This summer, great concerts are just three short stops away on the F Train from Roosevelt Island.

Since the U.S. Open abandoned Forest Hills Stadium for the National Tennis Center in 1977, the venue has mostly been left to decay, except for oddball events like the last Dysfunctional Family Picnic in 2013. But the West Side Tennis Club, which retained ownership, has now sunk some money into renovations and scheduled a stellar lineup of concerts at the 14,000 seat venue.

There will be a touch of nostalgia and coming full circle. But no, the reunited Monkees are not on the schedule. In the stuff of which legends are made, The Monkees played here in 1967 with Jimi Hendrix as their opening act. No kidding. The mismatch was so dreadful that Hendrix flipped off the Monkees fans when they insisted on singing along to Foxy Lady with "Foxy Davy" and abandoned the tour completely.

Who's Showing Up?

Returning after a 1965 appearance during which he was booed by folk fans is the great Bob Dylan on July 8 at 7:00. For contrast, on the night before Dylan's band plugs in, The New York Pops under Steven Reineke takes the stage. Megan Hilty and Matthew Morrison join them in songs.

Another legend, Dolly Parton brings C&W sweetness to Forest Hills on June 25.

Perhaps compensating for the absence of his one time buddy Art Garfunkel with whom he did duets here in the 60s, local boy Paul Simon returns for two shows, June 30 and July 1.

At the far end of the schedule awaits another great, Van Morrison, on October 9th. A veteran of Morrison concerts, I personally guarantee a great experience. Even in a gruesome mood, which he allegedly sometimes is, Morrison never fails to deliver.

For a full schedule of events, click here.

Getting there from Roosevelt Island

It couldn't be easier. Hop on a Queens bound F Train, and three short stops later you're at the Forest Hills - 71st Avenue Station. Take a short walk down 71st and take a right on Burns Street to Forest Hills Stadium. There will be lots of signs and friendly NYPD officers to help out.

 

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