Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

Why This Man is a VIP

December 12, 2015
JVHS Band Director Brian Walker

JVHS Band Director Brian Walker

He is a Very Important Person because he is one of many VIPs who are charged with the responsibility for teaching and inspiring our children to lead productive and fulfilling lives. The reason I selected him to make this point is because he brings to mind a very special music educator who positively affected mine and many other lives, the late Jordan Band Director Bob Barr, who grew a 17-piece pretty bad band – I was a member – into large bands that achieved national recognition. .

Walker, who recently graduated from the University of Georgia, in a sense, is starting his career as a music educator like Barr did. He’s in a little better shape. He’s starting out with a 30-piece band that plays well. The Jordan music program is in a rebuilding stage. Not too long ago, it had a drum line, but no band. That’s changed. And when Walker led the Symphonic Orchestra and Symphonic Band during the renovated auditorium dedication ceremony – it’s now the Robert M. Barr Auditorium – they sounded quite good to me.  They also knew they were appreciated, because the large audience of Jordan alumni and students gave them thunderous ovations.  Those ovations  continued when the Bob Barr Community Band played. The auditorium stage really filled up when the Jordan band joined them for the last two selections. It was a great finale with the school’s chorus, under the direction of Kirk Weller, joining the combined bands in a Christmas song medley. That one got a prolonged standing ovation.

Things are looking up again for Jordan musically.  I’m sure a lot of Jordan grads are glad.  I know I am.




My Wishes for You for Christmas

December 22, 2014

Dec 19 2009_COL LAND CHRIS_1544May you be surrounded by happy family and friends.

May you have laughs galore.

May you see a really good movie.

May you hear some moving music.

May you enjoy good food with fine wine.

May you be free of fruitcake and eggnog.

Columbus is the Place For A Super Night Out

December 1, 2014


You don’t have to go to Atlanta or New York for first-rate entertainment.  It’s right here in good old Columbus, GA, and it costs less, a lot less.  In fact, a lot of it is  absolutely free.  Also, you don’t have to fight gridlocked traffic.

Ed  and Sidney Wilson, Jean McKee, Julie Bray, and me at Social.

Ed and Sidney Wilson, Jean McKee, Julie Bray, and me at Social.

Take Saturday night, for instance.  We had a really outstanding dinner at Social.  Of course, the good company played a large role in the enjoyable Social experience.  There were a lot of young people there, so they probably didn’t know that the building at 11th and Broadway was Lee’s Discount Drugs dating back to the 1940s.  I enjoy it much more as a restaurant and bar.

Bill  Heard Theater is all  decked out for the holidays.

Bill Heard Theater is all decked out for the holidays.

After dinner we headed over to Bill Heard Theater at the River Center to see Cirque Dreams Holiday.  It was sensational nonstop Christmas holiday fun as the performers did what seemed physically impossible to do in an artistic way.  The set and costumes were dazzling.  The dancing comedian, who engaged audience members in his act, had the audience howling. It was really great fun.

There are a lot more good live shows coming to the River Center and the Springer in the coming months,  and there is live music for every taste with a great symphony orchestra,  a college school of music second to none that features weekly, sometimes nightly, concerts with most of them free to the public, and there is the Columbus Community Orchestra and the fine Fort Benning Manuever Center of  Excellence Band.  Both of then have free Christmas concerts this month.

So, don’t sit around a mope when you can get out of the house and enjoy it all Tis, indeed to season to be jolly.

Thanksgiving Thanks

November 24, 2014

A lot of miserable stuff is going on in the world right now (so what’s new?) , but, thankfully,  that’s probably not what’s on most Americans’ minds this week.  It’s Thanksgiving, which is probably second only in holiday popularity to Christmas,  or maybe tied with Halloween for second.  The popularity of Halloween is hard to figure , but then, it’s hard to figure a lot of the choices of the Booboisie.

Thanksgiving is really an interesting phenomenon.  People will fly a thousand miles or more to eat Thanksgiving dinner (Southern for lunch) with family members.  Sometimes, families follow the original Pilgrim’s tradition of  inviting guests. At the alleged first Thanksgiving feast, the Pilgrims invited 90 Native Americans, who had saved them by giving them enough food to survive their first year at Plymouth.  Big mistake by the Indians.  The same big mistake they made when they let Columbus come ashore in 1492.  (Interesting that we have named our city after a murderous enslaver of other human beings.)

But, I digress.

It’s the time for thanks.

Thanks to Kristin and Chris for providing me with a great-grandson right before Thanksgiving.

 Thanks to all my family for their love and support and to my friends for being my friends.

Thanks to all who work to make Columbus a place of beauty and grace,  and a place of wonderful live music and theater. Thanks to all who work to provide a public school system and university to give our youngsters a fighting chance to enjoy fulfilling lives;  and thanks to those who provide world-class museums that preserve and honor our past; and thanks to spiritual,  civic, and governmental organizations who strive to end hunger, homelessness and poverty; and thanks to all military service men and women for their service to our country.

Oh, and thanks to you for reading this.



My YouTube Merry Christmas

December 23, 2010

Here we go with my very first YouTube production.  It took a special occasion to prompt me to go to the trouble to learn how to do it, and, to be  honest I am still learning, because the reason I finally was able to get this on  this blog is the help I got from my stepson Ken Champion, who has a computer science degree.  I know you don’t need one for that purpose, but it doesn’t hurt. The special occasion is, of course,  Christmas.

Christmas Thoughts

December 13, 2010

    The emotional intensity of Christmas is amazing. It’s manic-depressive. It’s full of cheer, good feeling, carols, familial love, feasting, fruit cake (nothing’s perfect), ambrosia, adorable children, presents, etc. But. it also has its lows: the crazy uncle at Christmas dinner, maxed-out credit cards, booze overload, severe depression. It’s not all beautiful, but some of it is. May the beautiful outweigh the ugly for you.

The Landings Sets a Fine Example for Other Shopping Centers to Follow

December 22, 2009


Not only the Christmas decorations impress me, but the whole artistic, and creative approach of The Landings.  It’s more than just concrete, asphalt and stores.   It’s trees, and shrubbery, and sculptures…and, for Christmas…

the Budweiser Clydesdales in person!

And a real, working carousel.

Of course, the best example of what can be done with shrubbery, trees, sculpture, sidewalks, streets, fountains is downtown Columbus; however, that’s a different ball game.  Tax dollars are involved in that show.

A Personal Note

December 29, 2008

I’m back.  I’ve not posted anything for days because I have been ill from a reaction to a sulpher drug and just didn’t feel like it. I’m a little better so I can talk with you some again.

Though not feeling well at all, I have been able to enjoy the Christmas holidays with my family. My son Rick, his wife Marian and my two grandsons, along with one  of my grandson’s  girl friend, all came down from Cumming, Georgia to be with me on Christmas evening.  We gave each other gifts, but once again I was struck with the fact that the real gift is being with someone at Christmas. We had a grand time.

And I had another grand time when my four stepsons, one wife and three grandchildren came down Saturday to celebrate the holidays. Again, the greatest gift was simply their presence, and the delicious Mexican chicken soup in which one sqeezes fresh limes, with some killer cornbread, which was prepared by one stepson.

Hope  your Christmas was a great one,  and let me wish you a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

George Corradino Keeps Amateur Music Alive and Well in Columbus

December 6, 2008

   If you want a good example of just how active a person pushing 80 can be, look no further than George Corradino. He teaches two classes at Troy State University’s Phenix City campus;  conducts the Bob Barr Community Band,  which rehearses just about every Monday night; leads the choir at St. Anne’s Catholic Church; plays for funerals and weddings: and leads the 17-piece Cavaliers Big Band.

George Corradino and the Cavaliers playing a luau dance at the Mr. and Mrs. Club, Columbus, GA

George Corradino and the Cavaliers playing a luau dance at the Mr. and Mrs. Club, Columbus, GA

  Just get a load of what he is doing this weekend. Tonight and tomorrow, he is leading the Cavaliers in a musical drama at Evangel Temple called “I’ll be Home for Christmas.” The band will provide the music of  World War Two  for the play.  It will be a nostaglic look at WW II and feature the music and famous radio shows of the 40’s. Having been eleven years old when the war started, I remember those days vividly, those war years Chistmases,  and plan to be at the Sunday evening performance.  Tonight’s performance is at 6, and the Sunday performances are at 11:00 a.m. and 6:00 pm.  

Evangel Temple)

"I'll be Home for Christmas" pamplet (Courtesy: Evangel Temple)

Then Monday, George will be interviewed at noon on WRBL and I’ll be on the 5:30 WTVM newscast to talk about Monday night’s Twentieth Anniversary Concert by the Bob Barr Community Band. On top of conducting the band, before that, he will direct the music at St. Anne’s for a mass.

  “You like to stay busy, don’t you,” I said to George.

  “I always have, Dick. And I just love doing what I do.”

  And what he does is provide a tremendous music service to this community. My hat’s off to him.

  Hope to see you at the Bob Barr Community Band Twenitheth Anniversary Benefit Concert at  7:30 p.m, at the Jordan High auditorum. Admission is $5 and the current band gets the proceeds. Since I emceed the very first concert in 1988, George asked me to do this one. I’m honored.