Click here to read about the summer's FEATURED ARTISTS!

Visit the site's GUESTS page.

Click here for site NEWS.

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     Welcome to the eleventh summer for, and a warm "thank you" to all who keep visiting the site year after year! For those of you who have been with the site for a while, you know that each year things change a bit, hopefully for the better. If you'd like to know more about the site, you can find the information here, including the site's history and features. There are four main sections listed below. You can reach any of the sections by clicking the links, or continue scrolling down the page.



     In 2009, a "guerrilla" art piece appeared in Pasadena on a roadway median. The 18-foot wooden fork, literally at the "fork in the road" between Pasadena and St. John Avenues, was created by artist Ken Marshall. The city ordered it to be removed a few months after it was erected. However, it has since been refurbished, fully permitted by the city, and now sits as a permanent fixture in the intersection.

     Metaphorically, the "fork in the road" symbolizes a point at which certain decisions or choices have to be made, and that time has come for the site. Those visitors who have been coming to the site for at least the last year know that I have been working on a book about the site, a book called "Ten Summers: The Story of" The book is now done, and it contains a history of the site and "behind-the-scenes" information, poetry which has appeared over the years, art work and home page images from each of the themed summers from 2006 - 2012, many of the photographs from the "Attitude" series, and more. But it is really the story of TWO anniversaries since September of 2012 marked the end of the 10th anniversary summer for the site AND the 25th anniversary of the year I first took out student loans. The two anniversaries are intertwined, and not in a particularly positive way, either. Those who have visited the Essay and Essay Archives sections over the years may be familiar with the very first essay ever to have appeared on the site, the 2003 piece on student loans. Being able to post that information was part of the reason the site was even started to begin with. I hope to make more information about the book available as soon as possible.

     The fans of have made the site worth continuing in every way. It has been such a pleasure getting to meet and see so many of you year after year at the concerts. Last year the site had 12,000+ visits (representing over 8,000 unique visitor addresses) in its peak summer month. However, right now it is impossible to say what will be happening with the site after the end of this summer. So until further news is available, please enjoy the site and the performances, and know that all your messages and comments over the years have been greatly appreciated.


     The site has its roots in the Cypress College Extended Education computer labs. In 2003, while I was working on a series of computer-based tutorials (covering everything from data warehousing to Linux), I came across tutorials for HTML computer code and the Front Page website design program. As a practice exercise I designed a basic website with the Front Page program and posted it to the internet for about six weeks. Since it contained primarily my works (and a page of concert schedules), I called it Little did I know then that the six-week exercise would ever have a first, let alone an eleventh, anniversary! Had I known, perhaps I would have come up with a more "catchy" name. You know what they say about hindsight, though . . .

     Over the next couple of years I taught myself a bit more of HTML code and website design -- not enough to have a lot of flashy bells and whistles, but enough so that now I do everything for the site. I design it, write the code, research and write the articles and content, take the pictures (and incorporate many from my personal photo archives), compile the listings, manage it, and let you all know that it exists. For those music fans who have found the listings and are new to the site, you will need to know that there are two distinct phases to the site each year. The fall/winter/spring site is mostly text and in a much more succinct three-page format (Concerts By City, Concerts By Date, and an Arts/Special Events page). In the summer, generally from June to September, the site expands and takes on the format which you see now.


     The main pages of the site have evolved somewhat since 2003, and they are:

  • Poetry: In 1998 I wrote a short volume of poetry based on photographs which I had taken while travelling and living overseas. The volume was reworked in 2004 and new poems were added. Each year a few poems from the volume have been posted to the site, and in 2005 the works of a Guest Poet were also included for the first time. When possible, new poems are added to the site each year in conjunction with the year's theme.

  • Essays: Each summer there is a new series of three or four essays on a topic of technology-related current/consumer interest. The Essay Archives contain all the previous works which have appeared on the site from 2003 - 2011. In addition, the current year's essays are placed in the essay archives the month after they appear in the "This Month's Essay" section.

  • Free Concerts: This is the most visited section of the site. The listings are for free concerts and music-related events in Orange County, parts of Los Angeles County, and parts of the Inland Empire. Events in clubs, cafes, bars and similar venues covered elsewhere generally are not included. In the summer, concerts are listed both by date and by city for the three areas and in total in order to make it easier to find relevant information more quickly. Each year a few more cities and/or venues usually are added, and the cities currently covered for the summer concert programs are listed on the "Concerts By City" main page. You also will find the main concert calendar on the "Concerts By Date" main page. In 2010, a new section was added to the concert pages: Concerts by Type of Music, and it is now a permanent section of the site.

  • Links: This page was added primarily due to requests for more information about the musicians/bands appearing at the concerts. It includes both links to the cities and venues in which the concerts are held, and to the websites of bands/musicians appearing during the summer (when available). A small section of art and poetry links is included as well. Over the years, the page became one of the longest on the site, so it was split into three sections to avoid the page loading too slowly. The three links pages are City and Art/Poetry Links, Band Links A-L and Band Links M-Z.

  • Extras: The extras page was added in 2005 and offers a few other ideas for things to do or see for free during the summer months. The page is dynamic and continually being updated, and suggestions for items to be included are appreciated. The page also incorporates the type of information which appears on the site's Twitter and Facebook pages during the rest of the year.

  • About the Site: You're here now!

     Two other sections have been added since 2003. The Featured Artists page (2004) and Show of the Week section (2005), which has been found on the "Concerts By Date" main calendar page. Both were added in response to requests for more information about the summer entertainers. "Featured Artists" have a large number of performances over the summer in two or three counties, or, as in the case of a group such as the Long Beach Municipal Band, a number of performances in a particular venue or venues. As a general rule of thumb, and in order to give a wide number of groups the opportunity to appear as "Featured Artists," groups will be included in the section no more than once in a three-year period. "Show of the Week" includes acknowledgements of a wide variety of summer artists, special events, and whenever possible, the individuals, organizations and others who so generously make the shows possible. As a general rule of thumb, artists may be included in this section twice no more than twice in a three-year period. Due to changes in the summer concert schedules and other factors beyond site control, in 2010 and 2011 the "Show of the Week" section did not appear; it has since been cancelled as an addition to the site information.

     Website Guests: The works of a guest photographer were included in the site for the first time in 2004. In 2005, the site exhibited works of a guest photographer, guest painter and guest poet. These special guests are invited to exhibit works on the site which, as of 2006, either express or in some way interpret the summer theme. The site is called "," and if you understand a bit about how it has evolved, you'd know why the works on it have been mine. If the site stays in existence, however, my hope is that it will become much less about my materials and much more of a summer exhibition space for the works of other poets, painters, photographers and artists. Eventually this may also include a guest website designer/programmer, but only time will tell . . .

Photograph "Australian Protea" © 1985 Dorothy A. Birsic

     There is no logo for the site, but if there was, it might include a protea flower like the one shown in the picture above. The word "protean" has its roots in mythology in the god Proteus, a legendary sea god who had the power of assuming different shapes. In its more modern use it describes something capable of great change or readily assuming different shapes or forms. Hopefully this will continue to be a "protean" site in the sense that it can readily adapt to the changing circumstances in which it exists and become an ever more interesting stop for those who take the time to visit.


     Dorothy holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Southern California.  She also designed and completed a graduate program combining an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School with an M.A.L.D. (Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy) from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.  She has taken additional coursework in Human and Plant Biology, Genetics and Neuroscience.

     Dorothy's professional background includes work in public relations and management consulting.  She has been a Fulbright Scholar in the former Yugoslavia, a Rotary International Scholar/Ambassador in Sydney, Australia, and lived and worked in Japan.  She speaks Croatian, has passed oral and written translation exams in Japanese, and is currently teaching herself Spanish. In previous years, there also has been a section on the site featuring excerpts from a variety of Dorothy's personal and professional writings. Please click here to view those excerpts on a new page.

"Dorothy With Kangaroos"

     Miss Birsic is an avid sports and music fan.  She plays tennis, basketball, runs (well, used to, at least), is a certified PADI diver, bikes, and enjoys photography and playing the piano. She spends a bit of time in the garden, too, tending to everything from lemons and roses to passion flower vines and dahlias.

     If you have any questions or comments about the website, please send e-mail to


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