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City Parks Foundation Gala Honors Ron Delsener

Jon Bon Jovi, Idina Menzel, David Sanborn and more honor veteran Central Park concert promoter.

On the first day of summer, New York City's City Parks Foundation honored the city's legendary concert promoter Ron Delsener at it's annual gala event, one that raised over $1.1 million for the Foundation. Delsener had come on board to promote concerts in Central Park in the '60s and built up the legacy of the city with free (or very cheap) shows from artists like Tina Turner, Led Zeppelin, Barbra Streisand and the massive one with Simon & Garfunkel. He shared stories about many of those performances and also paid tribute to Bob Gruen, who was in the audience, for taking photos at many of them.

For the gala, Delsener selected a group of friends to perform, and what a great crew he assembled, including Peter Yarrow who sang "Blowin' in the Wind" and David Sanborn who performed a few songs as well. Idina Menzel did only one song, Radiohead's "Creep", that she had to restart after a quick tuning issue. And the very sharp looking Bon Jovi did "Who Says You Can't Go Home". Photos from the performances at Summerstage are below. The event provided a major boost to the Summerstage budget but individuals can provide additional support at one of the many free shows throughout the season. However there are more benefit (i.e. paid ticket) shows to look forward to including Band of Horses on September 22, Ryan Adams on July 20th and Flight of the Conchords on July 24th. The season is gonna be good.

Ron Delsener

Bob Gruen

Paul Shaffer and the Park Rangers

David Sanborn

Peter Yarrow

Jon Bon Jovi

Father Guido Sarducci

Idina Menzel

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