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McGills Community Band returns tonight

HOULTON, Maine — Another sure sign that summer is just around the corner takes place Thursday evening as McGill’s Community Band returns for its first concert of the season. 

For 32 years, McGill’s Community Band has entertained audiences throughout the summer at Houlton’s Monument Park with the sounds of big band favorites, contemporary pieces and timeless classics. Kevin Mania returns as the band’s conductor for his fourth season.

“We have been rehearsing since March, and we have had a good season so far,” Mania said. “We played our first concert back in March with the University Symphonic Band.”

McGill’s Community Band of Houlton was organized in 1985 as the fulfillment of David McGillicuddy’s dream. McGillicuddy, the then-band instructor for SAD 29, dreamt of resurrecting a local community band concept with membership comprised of local musicians who would perform in Monument Park on nice summer evenings as had been done in days past by the Houlton Town Band.

The first band was formed that year with 55 members. Membership in the band, at one point topped 100 players. The nearly 60 current members are a variety of younger and older players.

“We are very excited to play this year and have added some new young members to the group, which is very exciting for us,” Mania said. “McGills future depends on having young members in the group. Not only that, but it also helps boost our local school music programs as well because they have an extra opportunity to play all summer long, and play music that challenges them.”

Concerts are held at 7 p.m. in Monument Park every Thursday from June 15 to Aug. 17. For more information visit www.mcgillsband.com

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