Symphony to ring in holiday in Kannapolis
By Hugh Fisher
KANNAPOLIS — Patriotic music will soar and fireworks will roar once more in Kannapolis this Saturday night.
The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra will present “Celebrate America,” a free concert at Village Park.
Conductor Albert-George Schram will once more lead the symphony through a program of patriotic favorites and a salute to America’s veterans.
“It’s going to be a great show,” Schram said. “We will have lots of patriotic music and famous marches by John Philip Sousa.”
Many Independence Day standards, like “My Country, ’Tis of Thee” and the “Star-Spangled Banner” will be part of the program.
And so will Schram’s favorite part of the evening, the salute to members of the armed forces, “so that we can greet and salute all of our veterans and those who are currently serving,” Schram said.
There will also be selections from famous American musicals and legendary composers such as George M. Cohan.
“It’s all down-home, American stuff we were brought up on,” Schram said.
The annual Charlotte Symphony Orchestra show is becoming a Kannapolis tradition.
“It seems like a perfect night out,” Schram said. “They can relax, they can sing along, if they feel like dancing they can do that.”
He said the orchestra members love to be a part of the celebration in Kannapolis.
“Everybody is eager to celebrate our freedom, our independence and the people who serve and protect us,” he said.
The symphony concert will begin at 8:15 p.m.
At 7 p.m., award-winning singer/songwriter Sara Scott will perform — her first time in Kannapolis.
“We’re just looking forward to having a good time,” Scott said, “just enjoying ourselves.”
Scott’s 2009 album “The Way of Things” blends country and Christian music.
Her song “Leavin’ Nashville” won song of the year at the 2010 Charlotte Music Awards.
Another track, “Lines,” won an honorable mention in the annual song competition sponsored by CMT and the Nashville Songwriters Association International.
Scott said she and her band are honored to have been invited to perform at the Charlotte Symphony concert.
She said they’ve chosen a blend of familiar songs that should have people singing along, as well as some originals.
More than 12,000 people could turn out for the Charlotte Symphony concert, the city’s biggest outdoor event of the year.
Becky Tolle, they city’s coordinator of recreation and special events, said concertgoers need to plan ahead, arrive early and be prepared to park some distance away from Village Park.
Loop Road is closed at West C Street next to the park for construction of a waterline and pedestrian tunnel.
Tolle said people coming to Kannapolis from Interstate 85 via Lane Street should turn left onto North Main Street, where yellow directional signs will be posted.
“If they keep going straight (on Loop Road), they won’t be able to get to the park,” Tolle said.
Instead, visitors should park near one of four shuttle bus stops.
Free parking is available on the N.C. Research Campus.
Shuttle busses will stop at both the campus parking deck, on North Main Street, and the lot located at the corner of Laureate Way and Biotech Drive.
Shuttles will also pick up visitors from the parking lot located behind the Kannapolis City Hall, 246 Oak Ave.
Buses will also stop at the old Kannapolis post office, at the corner of Vance Avenue and Dale Earnhardt Boulevard.
Visitors are strongly encouraged to park in these lots and ride the shuttle buses, Tolle said.
Parking will be very limited on neighborhood streets near Village Park, she said.
Temporary “No Parking” signs will go up Saturday morning on some nearby streets.
With Loop Road closed, neighborhood streets must be kept clear for emergency vehicles, Tolle said.
Limited handicap-accessible parking is available at Village Park.
Village Park visitors are also into picnicking, with many bringing elaborate spreads for an evening of fun.
However, alcohol cannot be brought into the park, and coolers will be subject to search.
Beer and wine will be on sale in an enclosed outdoor “beer garden” next to the lawn.
No pets will be allowed in Village Park.
For more information, visit www.cityofkannapolis.com or call Parks and Recreation at 704-920-4343.
Contact Hugh Fisher via the editor’s desk at 704-797-4244.