Hello, Neighbors! Watch this space for monthly news and notes about tasty gems, handy services, art, and changes on Grand Ave., west of 580. Previous blogs are archived HERE! – LZ.
OAKLAND MUNICIPAL BAND
Something old, something new, free outdoor music, and red, white and blue!
The Oakland Municipal Band’s free summer concerts begin Season 103 on July 4, sparkling with holiday traditions. The band will also perform on four Sundays this summer: July 13, 20, 27 and August 3. A 35-piece professional band will perform from 1:00 to 3:00 pm in the marble and limestone Edoff Memorial Bandstand, located just past Children’s Fairyland at Lake Merritt Park. Some park bench seating is available, but most people bring a lawn chair, a blanket, or sit on the grass in front of the bandstand, listening to the music, gazing at Lake Merritt in the background, and enjoying a picnic and wine. A few snack items are for sale.
Special traditions for the 4th of July concert open each season. Many people will wear outfits incorporating red, white and blue; special recognition will be offered to veterans of each branch of the military; the program will feature several patriotic tunes; and when the band plays its concluding number, John Phillip Sousa’s Stars & Stripes Forever, children (up to age 90-or-so) will be encouraged to parade waving small flags.
You can view each up-coming music program at the Friends of the Oakland Municipal Band website. The program includes links to song lyrics that you can print and bring if you want to sing along – a new feature this year. Neighborhood leader, Bruce De Benedictis, a volunteer with the Friends of the Oakland Municipal Band for many years, cautions with a chuckle that some program lyrics from old songs this summer may disturb our modern sensibilities. Song choices will include “I Enjoy Being a Girl,” “Ain’t We Got Fun?” and the Chesterfield Kings jingle, “21 Great Tobaccos Make 20 Wonderful Smokes.”
Anne Woodell, 2009 Mother of the Year, helped found the Friends of the Oakland Municipal Band, a volunteer-led 501c3 nonprofit organization that contracts with professional musicians and secures donations and other funding to pay the musicians.
If you would like to help, once in a while or for every concert, come to the bandstand at 10 am on performance days to help set up chairs and music stands on the stage, or stay after the concert to help take them down. I can testify that absolutely no musical talent is required of volunteers (fortunately for me!)
Bring your picnic, a blanket, and a flag, and enjoy a delightful family event this Friday, July 4, and Sundays, July 13, 20, 27 and August 3, from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm.
Friends of the Oakland Municipal Band
Photos by Phil Laird