ALEXANDRIA — A day in the park will also mean a day of music in Alexandria this weekend.
Alexandria is holding its inaugural Band Fest from 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday at Beulah Park.
The Alexandria Community Band and America’s Hometown Band from Muncie will each perform separately before coming together to play a piece by composer Les Taylor.
“There are so many people in east central Indiana who have played a concert band instrument, and many have put them down for one reason or another,” Alexandria Community Band Director Alan Erwin said. “This showcases that music they love.”
Erwin said he’s talked to several other band directors about creating a local festival in recent years, but for one reason or another, it never came to fruition.
“There are other band festivals throughout the Midwest,” Erwin said. “Why not have one in Alexandria?”
Admission is free, and America’s Hometown Band will kick off the concert at 2 p.m., followed by the Alexandria Community Band at 3:15 p.m. The two groups will have a combined rehearsal at 4:30 p.m. before a short combined concert at 7 p.m.
Food vendors will be on hand during the event. People can purchase food from Pizza Hut, Dev’s Deep Fried Madness, The Glacier and Good’s Ice Cream throughout the day.
Erwin said although Saturday’s event only includes the Alexandria Community Band and America’s Hometown band, various other directors have expressed interest in Band Fest. Other bands who wanted to participate had scheduling conflicts they couldn’t work around.
But Erwin is already looking ahead to next year, and he’s planning on making the event even bigger.
It’s important, he said, to generate local interest for fine arts, particularly music.
“I think (music events) give the community a chance for musicians to express themselves through their music,” Erwin said. “Fine arts is a big draw in many communities.”