The St. Johnsbury Band was featured in an article in The Caledonian-Record
in August 2017 as part of the newpaper's series on summer destinations in the
Northeast Kingdom. Click here
to read the article.
Article reprinted with permission of The Caledonian-Record.
The St. Johnsbury Band performed a concert on Veterans Day, November 11, 2015
to honor all past and current members of the various branches of the armed forces
of the United States. For the Band, the 3rd oldest community band in the country,
this concert has became an annual and favorite event.The music performed by the
Band this year spanned from the Civil War with "The Blue and Gray" to the Vietnam
era with an arrangement of numbers from the musical "Miss Saigon".
The Band was joined in the concert by the Pumpkin Hill Singers and Pipe & Slippers.
The Pumpkin Hill Singers, under the direction of Susanne Terry, performed several
numbers, including some she co-write with her husband, Stephen Parker.
Pipe and Slippers is a folk band that plays both traditional and contemporary music,
as well as band originals. The band members, who hail from Northern VT and NH, each
play multiple instruments and often switch it up on stage, but the band's core formation
consists of Nathan Colpitts on guitar and vocals, vocalist Andrea Otto, Alycia
Moore on fiddle and vocal harmonies, and Owen Davie on bass.
The concert was also a benefit concert for the newly opened St. Johnsbury History
and Heritage Museum. The benefit was very successful with over $800 being raised
for the new museum.
Here is a photo of all three groups from that evening. Click on the photo for a
St. Johnsbury was one of many cities and towns across America that marked the tenth anniversary
of 9/11 on Sunday, September 11, 2011. An elaborate ceremony was held that included residents,
firefighters, state and local police, military officials, the St. Johnsbury Band, municipal
officials, and members of area faith communities.
The St. Johnsbury Band played from the bays of the fire station as the fire trucks held an enormous
American flag high above the crowd on Main Street. The Band opened the ceremony with "The National
Emblem" march by E. E. Bagley. The Band then played "The Star Spangled Banner". Brief speeches by
Town Manager Ralph Nelson, who was in Manhattan during the attack, and Fire Chief Troy Ruggles
followed. The fire department held an alarm-bell ceremony to remember those lost.
Taps and the echo were performed by Band trumpet players David Askren and Bobby-Ann Fearon. The
ceremony concluded with a presentation from the local faith community, which lit remembrance candles
to honor those who suffered and died in the attack, sang a song for peace, and conducted a
call-and-response with the participation of the crowd.
The St. Johnsbury Band received a heartfelt thank you letter from the fire department for their
participation. Click here
to read the letter.
The following story on the St. Johnsbury Band aired on "Morning Edition" and "All Things
Considered" on Vermont Public Radio on Monday, March 26, 2008 as part of their recognition
of Memorial Day. Reporter Charlotte Albright has put together a very nice piece on the band
and some of its history with interviews from several long-time members.
The St. Johnsbury Band held its annual dinner and business meeting on November 28, 2016 at the
United Community Church in St. Johnsbury, VT. There was a good turnout of Band members and spouses,
family, and friends. We had a potluck dinner this year and there are some good cooks in the band!
The business meeting was held after the dinner. Secretary Dianne Wyllie presented a summary of the
minutes from last years meeting, which were accepted with minor changes. Treasurer Kirsten Harter
presented the Treasurer's report bringing the members up-to-date on the Band's financial status. The
Treasurer's report was accepted without change.
Jim McGregor refreshed our memories on the meaning for each of the award plaques the Band maintains. He
read the current names on each of the plaques: Remembrance, Lifetime, and Honorary. The band voted to add
Peter Fichte to the Remembrance plaque. Fichte was a valued member of the clarinet section who passed away
in February of this year.
Next, Jim McGregor requested that we add Stacy Jewell as an Honorary member to the Band. Jewell is the St.
Johnsbury Treasurer and Town Clerk. She assists the Band each year in getting the request for our special
appropriation in each years town budget and makes sure the appropriation gets dispensed to the Band in a timely
There were no recommendations for Lifetime membership this year.
A number of Thank Yous were made. Manager Dave Hare thanked everyone for their help and ideas in making sure
the Band runs smoothly. A lot of pieces have to be taken care of for everything to work. Dave Askren thanked all
the new members who joined the Band which swelled our numbers to nearly 50 at some concerts. There were a couple of
times we barely fit on the band stand! Thanks were given to the State of Vermont – the State replaced all the lights
in the bandstand with new, brighter LEDs and painted the ceiling with a glossy white paint. This makes reading the
music at the summer concerts much easier. Santa and the Caledonia Children's Chorus have both agreed to return for
next years Holiday Concert.
Dave Hare has discussed with Peggy Pearl at the St. Johnsbury Heritage & History Museum about the possiblity of getting
a permanent exhibit for the Band. It would cost about $4000-$5000 for a display case. The Band felt it was worth the cost
as we are the third-oldest community band in the country and have been a big part of the history of St. Johnsbury. A committe
of John Goodrich, Dave Hare, and Richard Reed was formed to determine what items could be placed in this exhibit.
There was discussion about possible performance opportunities for the 2017 season. These include:
Spring concert honoring Don Mullally — Mullally was a strong supporter of the Band and it seems like
a good idea to present the music he played on the radio station in a concert in his memory. A small committee
was formed to try to find a date.
Big E in Springfield, MA in the fall — Grants could be applied for from National Life and Ben & Jerry's to
try and cover the cost of a bus for the trip. We would go down on a Saturday for Vermont Day during the exposition,
which is at the end of September/beginning of October.
Washington, D.C. Concerts in 2017/2018 — There is a group trying to put together a series of concerts in
Washington, D.C. featuring a community band from each state. This would be in 2017/2018.
Our annual meeting next year will be at a restaurant since we alternate potlucks and restaurants. Dianne Wyllie, along
with Joan Mead, will begin contacting restaurants for prices and dates. The Wine Gate was one suggestion along with the
possibility of having the dinner catered.
Emma Towle informed the Band that she has a decal maker and could make decals with the Band logo for anyone wishing to
The slate of nominations for the various positions was presented to the Band by Bobby-Ann Fearon.
The slate was unanimously passed with Davina Whitehill replacing Kathleen Barber as a Trustee. The slate
can be seen on the Members page.
The Band will start up again on Monday, January 16, 2017 at our usual rehearsal time of 7:00pm in our usual location
at the Courthouse.
The St. Johnsbury Band has a very extensive music library with pieces dating back to the 1800's
up to the current year. Several new pieces are added to the library every year. Click
music library catalog
to review the music library catalog. This listing is alphabetical by title.