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Grand Forks City Band marches on

For more than 100 years, the Grand Forks City Band has provided a musical outlet for anyone itching to play an instrument.

Currently, members of the band range in age from a junior high school student to someone who is 90-years-old and play various concerts around town throughout the year.

The Grand Forks City Band will conclude their summer session with a performance at 7:30 p.m. July 31 at the Myra Band Shell, located at the Grand Forks Historical Society, 2405 Belmont Rd.

The group has about 60 active members, with 40 to 45 people showing up for concerts at a time. At the shows, the City Band plays songs from a variety of musical genres, including patriotic music, Broadway songs and marches.

With such a wide range of age and musical ability, band conductor Don Langlie, of Popplers Music, admitted that conducting this type of band can be tough at times, but he finds the entire experience fun and enjoyable.

“It’s much more of a blessing than a curse,” Langlie said. “But ultimately, it’s so gratifying for me to see people finding joy in an activity that’s both a social activity, a group activity and first and foremost, a musical and artistic activity.”

The band rehearses once a week, and plays various shows throughout the year, taking the months of January and August off. The city provides the band with some funding, which helps to pay for things such as worn down equipment.

Jean Traub, a board member and clarinet player in the band, has been involved with the group for 20 years. She said after all these years, she keeps coming back to play because she loves music and the people involved.

“It’s a great group to play with,” Traub said. “You don’t have to be professional quality. They take you just the way you are.”

Langlie said it’s never too late for anyone with any kind of experience, even if it’s high school, to join the band. He said the band is always looking for new members.

“I think a lot of times, it’s one of those little jewels that’s forgotten about,” Langlie said. “But this gives people the ability to have an artistic outlet, and that’s timeless.”

Call Rupard at (701) 780-1122; (800) 477-6572, ext. 1122; or send email to 

Wade Rupard

Wade Rupard is a reporter for The Grand Forks Herald. Rupard is a 2014 graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism and is originally from Normal, Ill. 

(701) 780-1122