Lewistown band prepares for new season

From staff reports

LEWISTOWN – The Lewistown Community Band, under the direction of Peter Marsh, will resume its rehearsal schedule in preparation for the upcoming summer season. Rehearsals will begin at 7 p.m. March 31 at the Lewistown Elementary School.

New instrumentalists are always welcome and there are no auditions required for adults.

This season the band will honor several milestone anniversaries.

The band has added Edwin Franko Goldman’s V.F.W. March to its repertoire, as this is the 85th year that the local Earl W.F. Childs Post No 1667, Veterans of Foreign Wars received their charter. Ten years later, in 1939, Palmer S. Mitchell put together interested musicians in the area to form the VFW band, the predecessor of the present Lewistown Community Band.

“Prof” Mitchell was well known in central Pennsylvania music circles, as he organized and/or directed several bands, including the first Lewistown High School Band, The VFW Band, Beaver Springs Ladies Band, Alfarata Band and The Siglerville Band.

He also composed the T.O.H. March for the Tressler’s Orphan’s Home in Loysville.

The summer of 1939 saw the release of the motion picture “The Wizard of Oz.” An arrangement of tunes from that show will be included in the band’s summer programs.

This June is the 70th anniversary of the landing on the beaches of Normandy, and in late December of 1944, the Battle of the Bulge. All area veterans will receive the band’s appreciation, but particularly during the annual Let Freedom Ring concert on July 6, with some music from the big band era.

The band’s first concert will be at 7 p.m. on April 24 at Mifflin County Middle School, with a fund raising benefit for Friends of Mifflin County Library.

Sponsors of previous concerts include State Farm Insurance agents Dan Bennett, Bob Richard, Bob Knable and Jim Wagner, also Dr. R. P. Malhotra, Dr. Ricardo Carter, Dr. Gill Rogers, Snedeker Energy, Torquato Law Offices, Friends of the Embassy, Kline’s Barber Shop, MCS Bank, Jim and Carol Norton, Curves of Mifflin County, One Stop Communications, Nittany Media, Inc., and Grandma Flo’s Salad Dressing.

Anyone interested in sponsoring a concert or acquiring the services of the band may contact Joyce Ann Hutchinson at 994-1988 or visit the band’s website at