On a cold and snowy day in 1982, a handful of musicians climbed aboard a Breckenridge Building Center truck to play for the Ullr Fest parade, and the Summit County Community Band was born.
Now called the Summit Concert Band, the all-volunteer group of locals and visiting musicians celebrated its 30th anniversary on Aug. 18. Coming up, it will play three Oktoberfests and the County's Fall for the Arts celebration.
Thirty years is nothing to scoff at, and the Summit Concert Band celebrated its anniversary in due style with a day of rehearsals and camaraderie - and a grand total of 47 past and current members participating - followed by a concert at Lord of the Mountains Lutheran Church in Dillon.
Nine directors shared the stage, along with Olympic speed skier C.J. Mueller, who conducted "Stars and Stripes Forever."
"The band rehearsed all day, and for old folks that haven't played their horns in years, we played a fantastic concert and received a standing ovation," said band co-founder Sandy Cleveland, who organized the celebration.
The Summit Concert Band has a long history providing music for events and happenings, from town parades (Matt Cole drove the truck backward down Main Street Breckenridge on April Fool's Day) and the opening of the Summit County jail to political victory parties (the Republicans have better food, but the Democrats party longer, Cleveland said). "One couple met in the band and now have six kids," she said. "We all feel like godparents."
The band kicks off their Oktoberfest season this weekend in Frisco, performing both Saturday and Sunday from noon to 1 p.m. Other Oktoberfest performances include Sept. 16 in Breckenridge and Sept. 29 in Denver.
A Summit Concert Band ensemble will also play at the Outlets at Silverthorne at 3 p.m. on Sept. 7 as part of the second annual Fall for the Arts celebration, which unites arts groups for a County-wide celebration of cultural arts, taking place Sept. 7-9. The festival is coordinated by Arts for the Summit, led by Sandy Greenhut, who presented the Summit Concert Band with a plaque honoring their 30th anniversary on Aug. 18.
A nonprofit organization welcoming musicians of all ages and ability levels, the Summit Concert Band holds practices at 7 p.m. most Thursdays in the band room of Summit High School. Info: (719) 207-1795.
Info: Check out the 30th anniversary concert at www.ustream.tv/recorded/24807560