A Musical Weekend In Worthington, MN

My family recently spent a lovely weekend celebrating the musical talents of students in Worthington and the surrounding area. On the evening of Friday the 30th of March, my son played tuba in the 6th grade jazz band at Ben Lee’s Café – which just happens to be the place I live and write every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning while my youngest daughter is in pre-school.

I love Ben Lee’s.

But enough about that.

The 6th grade jazz band wasn’t the only band that played. Also performing were the 7th, 8th, and high school jazz bands, as well as a hand-picked group of 5th grade band students. It was a fun, loud, cozy, (did I mention it was fun?!), excellent night of music. Truly, the kids were fantastic (am I biased? Probably.) and their directors definitely deserve a round of hearty applause for their commitment to our kids that goes far beyond the classroom.

The 6th Grade Jazz Band! I'm particularly fond of the tuba player in green.
The 8th grade Jazz band.
The Trojan Jazz Band
It was a packed house!
Deb, the owner and very capable proprietor of Ben Lee's, along with some of her friendly employees.

We really enjoyed ourselves that night, but our musical weekend was only beginning. The next day, for the first time ever, my 4th grade daughter played in the Worthington Area Piano Teacher Association’s Piano Festival. She was tested in theory (I always HATED theory back in my dismal piano lesson days) as well as playing two pieces before a judge. She did quite well! In fact, she was asked to play one of her pieces in their Honors Recital the next day, which was lovely.

My favorite pianist. It's not a great picture - indoors, telephoto, no tripod. Not a good combination.
A good friend of my daughter's.
Good friends and piano teacher, Diane!

I think that, aside from hearing and seeing my kids perform, the next most fun thing about the musical weekend was seeing their friends playing along with them. In a small town, this isn’t unusual, but as my kids are just reaching the performing age, it’s something I’ve not experienced a lot. It makes me thankful for the good friends they have, for the good teachers in our area, and for the wee bit of musical talent that God has blessed them with.

Now if I could only get them to believe that practicing is fun.

P.S. – not all of these are great pictures – the telephoto lense (especially indoors and dark) needs a tripod and I didn’t have mine with me – it was with my husband in Germany!

5 Responses

  1. This is so interesting, that a school concert would be held in a cafe, integrating music right into the community. This is an excellent idea and you need to tell us more about this and how long the cafe has been hosting musical entertainment such as this.

    Also, I’d like an inside look at the cafe. Show me why this is your favorite writing hang-out. This looks like a treasure of a place.

  2. Good ideas, Audrey! I’ll have to do that for sure.

    They’re publishing this article in the Globe too, along with some of the pictures – in color – which is nice!

    1. Well, I’m not surprised that this is publishing in the print version of The Globe. You are becoming quite the reporter in addition to blogging. As always, I so enjoy learning more about the Worthington area.

      1. Thanks, Audrey! I think I’m going to have a heck of another post soon – our cat got sprayed full in the face by a skunk this morning…oy, vey!!!!!!!!!

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