Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

May 23, 2013

Chicory Square Concert Series to begin 25th season on Friday

By CHARLES OWENS
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

BLUEFIELD — The stage is now set for another season of musical entertainment in downtown Bluefield.

The Bluefield Middle School Band under the direction of Dr. Mary Woodbury will kick off the 25th season Friday of the downtown Chicory Square Concert Series. Sponsored by the Daily Telegraph, the free concert gets underway at noon at Chicory Square. The season-opening performance is a part of the Cole Chevy Mountain Festival.

“The weekly Chicory Square Concert Series has been bringing musical entertainment to Chicory Square for almost a quarter of a century now, and we are very proud to be the sponsor of this event,” Daily Telegraph Editor Samantha Perry said. “The reason it has been so successful is through the support of the downtown merchants, and individuals like Art Riley, and volunteers like Lynn and Carl (Burnette) who schedule the weekly concert series performers. We hate that the Bluefield High School band will not be able to open up the concert series this year, but we are excited to have the Bluefield Middle School band under the direction of Dr. Mary Woodbury performing for us Friday.”

Everyone is encouraged to visit Chicory Square Friday to help kick off another season of the summer concert series, Daily Telegraph Publisher Darryl Hudson said.

“Without the help of volunteers like Art, Lynn and Carl and the support of the city of Bluefield, the concert series would not be possible,” Hudson said. “So come out and enjoy the warm weather and show your thanks to a few of the folks that make this area a great place to live and work.”

About 93 students from Bluefield Middle School, including the sixth grade band and the seventh and eighth grade concert band, will be performing for the season opener, according to Woodbury. It will be the first time the middle school students have opened the concert series. Historically, the Bluefield High School Beaver Band opens the concert series. But the high school kids are in Disney World this week.

“They are kids — they are excited to play,” Woodbury said of the middle school band students. “It’s going to be a real new experience for them. I’ve invited everyone. I’ve sent letters home. Hopefully we will get a good crowd. If they (the parents) can get off from work, I’m sure they will come.”

Woodbury said the two middle school bands will combine to perform various musical selections. The kids will begin with “The Star Spangled Banner”.

“We are going to try to get the audience involved in one of our pep band pieces,” Woodbury said. “We are going to try to get them involved, and get them to clap with us.”

Woodbury said the band kids are preparing for Friday’s concert by visiting the James H. Drew Carnival today at city park.

“They are excited about the carnival,” she said. “Chicory Square sort of took a back burner when the carnival moved in.”

 All of the weekly concerts will be filmed again this year and placed on the Daily Telegraph’s video website, which can be reached at www.bdtvideo.com.

As in year’s past, different merchants will once again provide the door prizes for the weekly concerts. The concert series will be presented every Friday until the Labor Day weekend.

Friday’s concert is being co-sponsored by the Greater Bluefield Chamber of Commerce.

In the event of rain, information regarding the concert will be posted on the Telegraph’s website, www.bdtonline.com

— Contact Charles Owens at cowens@bdtonline.com