Summertime days and evenings give all of us in MI Town so many opportunities to get out and about — for neighborhood walks, with visits with neighbors and friends along the way, stopping by one of our restaurants, bakeries or coffee shops for a quick cup to give us energy as we go about our regular routines, or for a more leisurely lunch or dinner to celebrate a special occasion or friendship.

These days, most of us are busy with all things garden — going to the computer to check for yet another zucchini and/or squash recipe to keep up with the veggies showing up on a daily basis, picking green beans and other goodies to freeze for winter, and seeking out the blackberries and raspberries that are so incredibly good this summer. I spied the first almost-red tomato in the garden last Thursday, and hopefully by press time, there will have been more for salads and sandwiches and just for eating right out of the garden.

For the past two summers, I’ve been able to grow so many good and tasty vegetables, thanks to the Seed Lending Library at the Monmouth Public Library. This is my first year to try black beans and if the substantial yield from the peas, green beans and lettuce is any indication, this should give us a bumper crop. If your garden planting is complete for this summer, be sure to check with the library next springtime to see if this wonderful program will repeat. The seed packets are free, and if you can share goodies from your garden with someone else, that’s an added bonus for everyone.

Rock out with the group Charlie Horse this evening in Main Street Park in Monmouth. The fun begins at 6:30 p.m. Bring your picnic basket and enjoy another opportunity to get together with friends and neighbors, with no admission charge.

“The Avengers — Age of Ultron” is the featured outdoor movie on Thursday at the Independence Amphitheater. Bring the family, pack up a supper and enjoy a summer evening under the stars, free to everyone.

Celebrate Friday at another outdoor concert — this one on Friday evening at the Independence Amphitheater. Seattle-based Longstride will bring their reggae sound and enthusiasm to an evening of what promises to be great entertainment. There is a suggested donation of $5 to attend.

Let’s all be mindful of all the children and bicycle riders and dog walkers who are out enjoying the summertime days and evenings as we drive from one place to another. It only takes an instant for a serious accident to occur, and we want everyone to arrive safely at their destinations.

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