St. Cloud Municipal Band Celebrates 125th Anniversary [AUDIO, VIDEO, PHOTOS]
ST. CLOUD - The St. Cloud Municipal Band is celebrating it's 125th anniversary this year, and they're just as popular as ever.
No one seems to be sure of the specific year the band started, but the first recorded mention of the band was in 1887 -- 125 years ago. They bill themselves as one of the oldest municipal bands in the nation. At one time the band was known as the only band in the nation to play while riding bicycles. They've performed all over the world including trips to Beijing, China, Spalt, Germany, and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Mark Kaehler is the business manager, and also a member of the band. He says part of the reason for the band's longevity is their members tend to stick around for a while, including a few members who just left the band after 50 years.
Kaehler says they limit their numbers to about 50 members, and they have a waiting list to join. They're funded by the city and they also get grant money from the Land and Legacy Amendment. Kaehler says they practice every Monday night and perform about 25 free concerts every year.
They kicked-off their 2012 season with a concert on Monday night at the Paramount Theatre. One of the members of the audience says she's watched the band perform several times.
You can find the band at the VA for their Memorial Day ceremony, they perform regularly at Barden Park, and at Hester Park on the Fourth of July.
Short video of their performance at the Paramount Theatre on Monday, 14th, 2012.
And here are some photos from throughout the history of the St. Cloud Municipal Band, courtesy of The Stearns History Museum archives.