Tickets Now Available for 2015 D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops

Media Contact:
Samara Napolitan
Grand Rapids Symphony
616.454.9451 x 4

The music of Neil Diamond, Tchaikovsky, Billy Joel, Elton John and Five for Fighting will fill the valley at Cannonsburg Ski Area this July for the Grand Rapids Pop’s 2015 D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops. The outdoor summer concert series has offered a relaxed, customizable and affordable experience for over 25,000 concertgoers to Cannonsburg each summer for over two decades. Tickets to the 2015 series are on sale today with a variety of seating options and group packages available.

This year will be the first that audiences see the Symphony’s new Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt on the podium for “Classical Fireworks.”

"I'm so happy to begin my tenure as Principal Pops Conductor of the GRS with the Classical Fireworks concerts in this summer's Picnic Pops,” said Bernhardt. “Summer pops concerts have been a tradition and delight in my career, and I know that ours is a special and cherished series that combines the perfect outdoor atmosphere with the excellence of the Grand Rapids Symphony.”

The 2015 D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops will be held Thursday and Fridays, July 9 through July 31 featuring the following concerts:

July 9 & 10: Super Diamond

July 16 & 17: Classical Fireworks

July 23 & 24: The Piano Men

July 30 & 31: Five For Fighting

The Cannonsburg gate opens at 5:30 p.m. each night for picnicking and pre-concert entertainment, including kid-friendly activities like face painting, crafts and an instrument petting zoo. Concertgoers can take part in the tradition of packing their own picnic baskets and coolers, or they may purchase food off the grill at the Cannonsburg concession stand. Alcoholic beverages are permitted on the grounds and parking is free for attendees. VIP Parking upgrades will be available for a small fee beginning in June.

Programs and Special Guests

Super Diamond – July 9 & 10, 7:30 p.m.

The Grand Rapids Pops will kick off the summer with a high-octane Neil Diamond tribute. Associate Conductor John Varineau will lead the orchestra and guest performers in power ballads, up-tempo hits and classic tunes like “Sweet Caroline,” “I’m a Believer,”  “America” and “Red Red Wine.”

Classical Fireworks – July 16 & 17, 8:00 p.m.

Bob Bernhardt, Conductor

This annual audience favorite includes iconic classical excerpts, patriotic marches and, of course, the biggest and best firework display in West Michigan set to Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture.”

“There are lots of musical fireworks on this concert, including works that are a source of national pride from many countries,” commented Bernhardt. “Sibelius' ‘Finlandia’ and Elgar’s ‘Pomp and Circumstance’ share the stage with John Williams and John Philip Sousa! This is a concert designed for the entire family."

The Piano Men – July 23 & 24, 7:30 p.m.

John Varineau conducts this salute to two of the world’s most popular songwriters, Elton John and Billy Joel. Featuring acclaimed pianist Jim Witter on a grand piano and multimedia projections, the Grand Rapids Pops will lead the audience on a journey through great moments in contemporary music with songs like “My Life,” “Your Song,” “Candle in the Wind” and “Just the Way You Are.”

Special Event: Five for Fighting – July 30 & 31, 7:30 p.m.

Singer-songwriter John Ondrasik, best known by his stage name, Five For Fighting, joins the Grand Rapids Pops onstage for this special performance. Fully experience his inspirational hit songs like “Superman (It’s Not Easy),” “100 Years” and “The Riddle” with lush orchestral arrangements.  

Ticket Options and Prices

3-Concert Series and Flexpass Packages

Save up to 30 percent by packaging the Picnic Pops experience with a 3-Concert Series or Flexpass. The 3-Concert Series subscription is good for lawn seating to “Super Diamond,” “Classical Fireworks” and the “The Piano Men.” It is priced at $39 for adults, $33 for college students and seniors, and $15 for children ages 2-18. Children the age of 2 or under are admitted for free. Series tickets for general admission chair seating are $75, $135 for an individual reserved table seat and $1080 for a reserved table of eight.

The Flexpass 6-Pack offers six lawn tickets which can be used in any combination for “Super Diamond,” “Classical Fireworks” and “The Piano Men.” Flexpasses are $90 for adults and $78 for seniors.

Individual Concert Tickets

Super Diamond, Classical Fireworks and The Piano MenAdvance lawn tickets to the above concerts are $18 for adults ($21 the day of the show) and $16 for college students and seniors ($19 the day of the show). Tickets are available for children ages 2-18 for $5 in advance or $8 on the day of the show. MySymphony360 members can attend for $15 or $21 the day of the show. Children the age of 2 or under are admitted for free.

Other prices include: $30 for reserved chair seating ($33 the day of the show), $48 for individual table seats ($51 the day of the show) and $384 for a full table of eight ($408 the day of the show).

Special Event: Five for Fighting

Lawn tickets are $30 for adults ($33 the day of the show), $28 for college students, seniors and MySymphony360 members ($31 the day of the show), and $15 for children ages 2-18 ($18 the day of the show). Other prices are: $40 for reserved chair seating ($43 the day of the show), $65 for individual table seats ($68 the day of the show) and $520 for a full table of eight ($544 the day of the show). 3-Concert Series and Flexpass buyers enjoy priority seating in the table area for Five for Fighting.

Group Tickets

Get your family and friends together for a night of fun and music on the hill and save 20% on adult tickets. Group discounts apply to groups of 10 or more people.

How to Buy Tickets

A 3-Concert Series, Flexpass and individual table and chair tickets can be purchased through the Symphony office by calling 616.454.9451 x4 (Day) or 616.885.1241 (Eve), in person at 300 Ottawa Ave NW, Suite 100 or online at

Group tickets are available by calling 616.454.9451 x142. Tickets are also available at the gate at the night of the concert. Ticket prices increase by $3 if purchased on the day of the performance.

About the Grand Rapids Symphony

The Grand Rapids Symphony was officially organized in 1930 and is nationally recognized for the quality of its concerts and educational programs. Led by Music Director David Lockington, Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt and Associate Conductor John Varineau, ten concert series are presented, featuring a wide range of music and performance styles. More than 400 performances are presented each year, touching the lives of some 170,000. Nearly half of those who benefit are students, senior citizens and people with disabilities reached through extensive education and community service programs. The Symphony’s Affiliated Organizations include the Grand Rapids Bach Festival, Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus, Grand Rapids Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra, and Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses. The Symphony also provides the orchestra for Opera Grand Rapids and the Grand Rapids Ballet Company. To learn more about the Grand Rapids Symphony please visit

This activity is supported in part by an award from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.