‘s Wonderful, ‘s Marvelous to hear band music in the park

City band concerts offer lucky attendees the rare opportunity to sit back, relax and experience life exactly as it sounded 10, 20, 30 even 100 years ago, for exactly the same cost.


Close your eyes, let your spirits start to soar and you’ll live as you’ve never lived before.

That was our experience, anyway, as we enjoyed the Appleton City Band’s “Broadway and Movies” concert. What a privilege to hear a full band run through such enjoyable music from Broadway shows like Phantom of the Opera, Funny Face, and Music Man, and well-scored movies like 2001 A Space Odyssey and the Wizard of Oz.

Music transcends time and nowhere is that more evident than a free city concert. With children’s laughter drifting over from one direction, tennis balls slapping the court from another and excellent music scoring it all, we could have been sitting at Pierce Park in 1940.

To this concert, though, people came in cars, on mopeds, on foot, on bikes and small buses owned by various assisted living centers. How nice to get out on a perfect summer evening, socialize a bit and listen to well-played music.

The musicians seemed to be enjoying their time as well and, for one, brief, crazy moment, I thought about dusting off the flute I haven’t played since 1982 (and didn’t play all that well then) and joining in.

Fortunately for the large crowd assembled last night, and those that will attend concerts in the future, I realized quickly that my greatest gift as a musician is the ability to enjoy other people’s talents and I look forward to more concerts in the park.

If you live in the Appleton area, here is the schedule for the remainder of the year:

July 4: Patriotic Night
July 11: Guest conductor night
July 18: 1930s and 40s
July 25: Shared concert with Great Lakes Naval Band – NOTE time change: 6:45 p.m. – 8:15 p.m.
Aug 1: Marches and masterpieces
Aug 8: Leroy Anderson night
Aug 15: Best of the Summer

There’s nothing sweeter than small children dancing to live music.
Following the likes of Peter Heid and Ike Spangenberg, Conductor Jim Thaldorf continues a tradition of mutual enjoyment between musician and audience. Mr. Thalsdorf is also the band director at Appleton North High School where he does an excellent job as well.
Pretty good crowd for a Tuesday.
Shout out to birthday girl Mary Kay, who picked a lovely spot to make a wish.
It’s just a really nice way to spend a Tuesday night.

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