Gettysburg Festival’s All-American Brass Picnic on Saturday, June 16 will offer a “picnic in the park” setting at the Festival Main Stage at Gettysburg College. The full afternoon lineup will spotlight some of the best brass groups from the mid-Atlantic region as part of the 10-day Gettysburg Festival celebrating American arts, culture and cuisine.

“The brass picnic is truly a slice of Americana and a great way for the community to come together,” said Beth Kirby, Executive Director of the Festival. “Gettysburg Festival is pleased to offer free admission to this fantastic event, meeting our goal of making the arts accessible and available to all.”

The lineup includes:

12 pm: Spires Brass Band of Frederick, MD
1 pm: Athena Brass, representing 13 states across the USA plus Canada
2 pm: No BS! Brass Band of Richmond, VA
4 pm: Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass of Philadelphia, PA

This project is partially supported by a grant from Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour, a program developed and funded by The Heinz Endowments, the William Penn Foundation, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and The Pew Charitable Trusts, and administered by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation. Media sponsors for the All American Brass Picnic include Celebrate Gettysburg Magazine and Susquehanna Style Magazine.

A Dream Team Gives Back

The Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass (RMPBB) is composed of some of America’s top brass musicians dedicated to bringing the joyous experience of great music to a wide range of audiences. A veritable “dream team” of virtuoso brass players, members of the group have appeared on the world’s most prominent stages.

RMPBB is dedicated to the notion that music is a gift to be enjoyed by everyone, and its members are especially committed to reaching out to the world’s youth and inspiring them to reach for their dreams. To share this commitment in Gettysburg, the Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass will offer a free workshop; open to brass musicians of all ages and levels.

This unique opportunity, partially supported by a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, will take place on June 16th from 11am -12pm at The Junction in the College Union Building (CUB) of Gettysburg College. The workshop is free but reservations are required and can be made by calling the Festival office at (717)334-0853.

New to the Festival Stage

Named after the Greek Goddess of wisdom, the Athena Brass Band is the first all-female brass band in the United States. Formed in 2003, with members from across the country and Canada, Athena musicians include current or former members of the U.S. Army Band, the U.S. Coast Guard Band, Brass Band of Battle Creek and the New Sousa Band.

If You Decide to Go…

The Festival Main Stage is shifting to a new, larger location on the Gettysburg College campus for 2012. It will be located on Memorial Field, behind the College Union Building, with free on-campus parking nearby at Stadium Lot. This more spacious location allows for better visibility of the stage, without trees in the line of sight; however portions of the day have the potential for direct sunlight so attendees are encouraged to wear hats and bring sunscreen as desired.

A wide selection of classic American picnic fare by outstanding regional vendors, along with beer, wine and other beverages, will be available. Guests are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs, and may bring sun umbrellas to set around the edges of the seating area.

A Brass-tastic Weekend

Additional Gettysburg Festival brass performances include:

  • Brass on the Square, 6-8pm, June 15 in front of the Gettysburg Hotel in Lincoln Square. Enjoy the music, while strolling through the Square watching downtown scenes come to life on artists’ canvases, as part of the Quick Draw a new Festival event, taking place simultaneously. The Quick Draw is a timed competition, after which work is judged, prizes awarded, and work will be immediately included in a “wet sale.” Prizes for this event were generously donated by ACNB and Blick Art Materials.
  • Wildcat Regiment Band, a Civil War period band, performs on June 16 at 2 pm at the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center and at the Pennsylvania Monument at 6 pm.

Support for Brass Music

Generous support for the 2012 All American Brass Picnic is provided by Dr Pepper Snapple and by Gen On, and by the Ben Jones’ Tuba Open Golf Brass Benefit. This golf tournament, organized to support brass programming, will be played Thursday, June 14 at Mountain View Golf Club. For more information and registration contact Ben Jones at jonesbl@embarqmail.com or 334 7719.

All 2012 Festival brass performances are free and open to the public; however, tickets to the All-American Brass Picnic are required for entry. Visit GettysburgFestival.org to obtain your free ticket. Donations are graciously accepted at the Picnic, so that this free, quality programming may continue.

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