MLK parade organizers seek local band

Published 10:10 pm Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Trumpeters, drummers and players of any instrument are being sought to form a community band.

In hopes of creating a band for the annual Martin Luther King Day parade, the local chapter of the Alabama Democratic Conference is issuing an invitation for area musicians to join.

Regina Watson, a member of ADC, is hoping area musicians will answer the call to form the MLK Day band.

“We are hoping to have a band for the parade coming up in January,” Watson said. “We didn’t have a band for the parade last year. We hope to get some participation from the community’s musicians this year.”

Local high school bands have not participated in the parade and Watson said out-of-town bands are getting harder to get.

“Year before last we had Hillcrest’s band from Evergreen and a band out of Mobile,” Watson said. “We had tried to work out things to have Hillcrest back last year but that fell through. We had to pay the band from Mobile in order for them to get here for the parade. We also gave a love offering to the Hillcrest band for their efforts.”

Watson said the idea of forming a community band will give musicians of all ages a chance to participate in the annual MLK Day parade.

“If there are students in our high schools that want to participate, this will give them that chance,” Watson said.

“We have some adults in the community that are great musicians and this will give them a chance to be involved in a community-wide event.”

Watson said the group has already gotten a commitment from a former band director who has agreed to help lead the volunteer band when one is formed.

“Johnny Hall has stepped up and said he would take care of organizing the group when enough volunteers have stepped up,” Watson said. “He is a former band director and has really good knowledge of music and marching so it’s a natural fit. We just hope that musicians will step up and volunteer to be a part of the celebration we have planned.”

Any musician, regardless of age, is invited to be a part of a community band to perform during the annual Martin Luther King Day Parade set for Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012.

“This would be a great thing for the community if we can get this going,” Watson said. “It would show that this community can come together to work for a common goal.”

Watson said anyone interested in being a part of the community band can volunteer by calling with their name, number and the type of instrument they play.

To volunteer, call Watson at 363-1524 or find her on Facebook.