Cal-Mum Hometown Holiday Nighttime Parade 2020

by Maria on December 8th, 2020

Finally! We got to play in a parade. If you look at the schedule on this web site, all you see is one event after another "Canceled due to coronavirus." It has been a whole year since we played for an event, and that event was the Hometown Holidays Parade in 2019.

At first, Kelley's Heroes was not going to participate in this parade because it was planned to be a vehicle parade, and there were no plans to include marching units. Then Janet from the parade committee suggested that the band could ride on a flatbed truck. It was the perfect solution.

The vehicles lined up at J.W. Jones Hall. As we left the parking lot and proceeded north on Route 36 and Spring Street, our music was flapping uncontrollably on our folios. The trucks were going so fast! When we reached Mumford and started the return trip on North Street, they settled into a slower pace much better for us.

Since we haven't played for so long, some of us had amusing anecdotes to tell about looking for our instruments, or music, or other accessories. Earlier this year, Maria had taken her saxophone for repairs, and she had emptied the case of all unnecessary accessories. When she opened her case, the lyre was missing. Fortunately, Steve had an extra one. Some people recounted how they were looking for their Christmas music, not realizing that it was still in their pouches because we haven't played since last Christmas.

Another result of not playing this year is that some of us didn't have the lips or the legs to march a four-mile parade. Normally, we would have been doing one or two events each week all summer and our lips and legs would be at their strongest. Not this year. This was a four-mile route, comparable to the Santa Claus Parade in Toronto. If we had marched, we would have been on the street for about one and a half hours. That's a long time to march and play. Riding on the flatbed truck cut the time down to about 35 minutes, which was much more reasonable under the circumstances.

We had a few guests. Dennis and LouAnn played with us for the first time, and Ford doesn't play with us very often. All three of them play in the LeRoy Town Band - another band that hasn't played all year - along with several members of Kelley's Heroes, so we all know each other. They were just eager to have an opportunity to play.

For woodwinds, we had Tracey on piccolo and LouAnn on flute; Karen R. on clarinet, Steve and Margaret on alto saxophone, Maria on tenor saxophone. For brass, we had Bob and Ford on trumpet, Dennis on trombone and Josh on sousaphone. People came from Churchville, Bergen, Batavia, and Farmington.

As Josh said, it felt so good to play together, and even better to play in front of people. With a vaccine for the coronavirus coming soon, we can only hope that there will be more events to play together in front of people in 2021.

Posted in Performances, Stories    Tagged with Cal-Mum, Hometown Holidays, Tracey, Karen R., Steve, Margaret, Maria, Bob, Ford, Josh



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