Entire Kokomo Park Band will perform at fair for first time

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Jul. 14—For the first time, the entire 50-member Kokomo Park Band is going to play at the Howard County 4-H Fair.

At 8 p.m. Saturday, the Park Band will perform a concert titled "Fairest of the Fair," at the South Grandstands. The show will feature multiple vocalists and the Retired Rum Runners Traditional Jazz Band.

"I think it's an excellent opportunity to reach more people who may not be familiar with what we do, or may not be able to get to the parks on Wednesday nights," said Keith Whitford, manager of the Park Band.

Whitford added that last year was the first time the Park Band had any presence at the Howard County 4-H Fair. But instead of the full band, it had been the 16-member street band.

This year, when fair organizers were looking to fill a vacant Saturday performance slot, the Park Band, which is celebrating its 75th year of entertainment, was asked to perform.

The concert's title is a reference to John Philip Sousa's song "Fairest of the Fair." The concert will also feature "Stars and Stripes Forever" and "I've Made My Plans for the Summer" by Sousa.

Soprano Diana Huntoon, who has performed with The Indianapolis Symphony, The Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra and various opera groups, will sing during "I've Made My Plans for the Summer."

Other compositions will include "Wildcat Valley Fanfare" by Mike Sweeney, "Kokomo, Indiana" by Josef Myrow and Mack Gordon, "Danny Boy" arranged by Robert W. Smith and "Americans We" by Henry Fillmore.

There will also be a sing-along led by the Park Band and a salute to the United States Armed Forces. One of the show's vocalists, Cody Kopa, will perform a narrated piece with the Park Band, titled "We the People" in honor of the U.S. Constitution.

Glenn Welch will sing American folk music during the show's intermission.

The jazz band will perform "When You're Smiling."

James Bennett III can be reached at 765-454-8580 or james.bennett@kokomotribune.com.