Music has always been a part of a day at an amusement park, quite often provided by small bands or singing groups. As a low cost alternative to big scale entertainment productions, theme parks incorporated the idea of small bandstand venues which could serve as a place for providing entertainment throughout the day on a relatively small budget.

During Great Adventure's first two seasons in 1974 and 1975 the park offered large scale production shows in its huge arenas.  With the relocation of Great Adventure's entrance plaza from Dream Street to the Fountain, the central area of the park was reimagined with a new patriotic theme to celebrate America's Bicentennial in 1976 and along with several new gift shops, the Liberty Square Gazebo was added to bring music to the area.
Since its introduction, Liberty Square Gazebo has long been one of the premier music venues in the park providing entertainment to guests as they enter and leave the park as well as for the diners at one of the many restaurants and snack stands which dot this high traffic section of the theme park.  Shows over the years have run the gamut from rock bands, musical revues, Dixieland bands and more.    
Click the image below to view a video of one of
Liberty Square Gazebo's first production.

For many seasons the presentations in the Gazebo were continuous throughout the day with alternating acts singing away the hours from opening to closing.  Often it was a rock band playing the hits of that summer or a musical revue (generally with three female singers) presenting a series of songs from across the decades.
Generally the stage set was quite simple with microphone stands for the performers and some basic curtains at the rear of the gazebo where the cast would emerge for their shows. The lack of any backstage space meant that the performers would walk over to the Gazebo from one of the nearby show venues where the dressing rooms were located.
With the changing times and tastes, the types of entertainment would change each season. With the decline of girl groups and the rise of boy bands, male vocal groups took center stage. 
Liberty Square Gazebo
Names Through the Years


Liberty Square Gazebo

Miller Brewing Liberty Square Gazebo

Liberty Gazebo

Liberty Square Gazebo
Liberty Square Gazebo
Shows Through the Years

1976-1977:  Fun with Music
1978-1984:  Music, Music, Music
1985-1986:  Dr. Moe's Magical Elixir Revue
1987:  Music, Music, Music
1988-1989:  Paper Dolls
1990:  Sweet Harmony/Music, Music, Music
1991:  Music, Music, Music/Spotlights
1992:  On Stage/Great American Revue
1993-1994:  On Stage
1995-2004:  (no shows)
2005:  New Image
2006:  Welcome to the '60s 
2007-2008:  Recycle This!
2009:  Kidz Karaoke
2010:  Midway B-Boyz
2011-Present:  (no shows)
In 2006, one of the most elaborate productions staged in the Gazebo was the Welcome to the 60's show, which actually added scenery and elaborate costume changes.  The larger than typical cast featured six singers and dancers that provided a high energy trip through the music of the '60s.
Percussion acts were another trend in entertainment with shows like "Stomp" spawning theme park variations.  Great Adventure introduced its own version of the show with drummers using unusual objects to make a wide array of sounds in its 2007 and 2008 production of "Recycle this!".  
The rise of television singing competitions along with advances in technology paved the way for karaoke style shows, requiring just one performer to keep things moving with the crowd supplying the musical talent (or lack thereof).

In 2010. urban themed shows took over the Gazebo further reflecting changes in musical tastes as well as the changing demographics of park guests.  These shows offered R&B style music along with hip-hop style dance.

Unlike its heyday in the 70's and 80's, the Liberty Square Gazebo has remained mostly dark in recent years with the exception of an occasional special act or a group brought in for a specific event or festival.   Replaced by piped in pop music, gone are the days when guests could catch some live music while enjoying a meal or simply relaxing alongside the fountain.