• 52°

Downpour doesn’t stop good time at Pops at the Post

By Amanda Raymond

amanda.raymond@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — Raindrops couldn’t muffle the sounds of the symphony at Saturday’s Pops at the Post event.

The Salisbury-Rowan Symphony played under cloudy skies at the Salisbury Post loading dock near the intersection of Church Street and W. Innes Street in downtown Salisbury.

Thousands of people attended Pops at the Post, some sitting on blankets, others in camping chairs, others still just standing and walking around.

Pops at the Post started in 2005 as part of the Salisbury Post’s centennial celebrations. It has continued as an annual, free community event.

The Salisbury Swing Band had couples dancing while playing and singing a couple of songs before the event started.

Maestro David Hagy returned to lead the orchestra in his signature yellow jacket. He started the night off with “Symphony No. 6 III. Allegro Molto Vivace” by Peter Tchaikovsky.

Michelle Strong, a middle school coordinator for the Rowan County Crosby Scholars, attended the event last year. She said it is nice to see everyone coming together and being friendly towards one another.

“You get to see the essence of the town,” she said.

A light rain came down after about 20 minutes. But most were prepared with umbrellas, some having used the same umbrellas earlier in the day to shade themselves from the sun.

“I don’t know who’s wetter, you or me,” Hagy said to the crowd.

The rain seemed to stop for a few minutes before a heavy downpour drenched the crowd while the orchestra was playing “Water Music: Allegro Deciso” by George Frederic Handel. Many ran for cover under tree canopies and the ATM drive-through of the former First Bank.

Others embraced the rain, choosing to stay and get soaked out in the open parking lot. Children took full advantage of a chance to play in the rain and jump in puddles.

Watching the kids play ended up being a highlight for Thomas Armstrong, an attendee. He, his wife Joyce and 9-month-old son Noah brought their blanket under the protection of the ATM drive-through when it started to drizzle.

“Seeing the kids playing a while ago was worth it,” he said.

Armstrong said the rain did not affect the event much because the orchestra kept playing and people stayed to listen.

Armstrong also said they brought Noah so that he could be exposed to the music.

“We’re trying to introduce him,” he said.

Joyce Armstrong said they have attended the event for the last five years.

“We love the orchestra,” she said.

The rain stopped after about 10 minutes and people started to migrate back to the open parking lots to enjoy the rest of the show and visit food vendors like TnG BBQ, Dolce Italian Ice and Kabobs Gourmet Food Truck. Cheerwine also gave out free drinks.

One fun song that the orchestra played was theme song from the television show “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.” Lyrics were put up on screens and the audience was invited to rap along. Hagy said that rap music was “here to stay,” as showcased by the popularity of the Broadway play “Hamilton,” a rap musical about the life of Alexander Hamilton.

Hagy had a tribute to Prince planned, but he said he could not get permission to play the songs in time for Saturday. Instead, the orchestra played songs to match the wet evening — a rain melody that included the songs “Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head” and “Singing in the Rain.”

“Now you can actually say you’ve sat and sung, or at least listened to, ‘Singing in the Rain’ in the rain,” Hagy said.

The orchestra also honored Frank Sinatra by playing songs that he made famous, including “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” and “The Lady is a Tramp.”

Cellist Kevin Agner lead the orchestra in “Elegy” by Gabriel Faure, a tribute to Addie Ketner, Ralph Ketner and Dale Higbee.

Lee and Bobby Wagoner, members of the Civitan Club of Salisbury, were one of the couples dancing during the “Pops Hoedown.”

Lee Wagoner said she did not think the rain did much to dampen the spirits of attendees.

“The rain added a little special touch to it,” she said.

Bobby Wagoner said he liked the relaxing atmosphere of Pops at the Post.

“No matter who you are, you can fit in,” he said.

Madison Lovingood loved the atmosphere so much when she attended the event last year that she decided to spend her Sweet 16 at Pops.

“I really love music,” she said. “It’s a big part of my life.”

She said she and her friends from the East Rowan band program enjoyed the event despite the rain.

“We’ve had a great time,” she said.

The symphony ended up skipping “The Flintstones Meet the Jetsons” piece because of more bad weather forecasted to roll in.

In spite of the threat, most people stayed to hear the last three songs. The lightning flashing in the skies overhead added nicely to the deep, thunder-like sounds of the percussion section during the “’1812’ Overture.”

Hagy sent crowds home before another downpour could begin, saying he hoped everyone had a great, albeit “slightly wet,” evening.

Contact reporter Amanda Raymond at 704-797-4222.

Comments

Local

Tillis says Trump will extend offshore drilling pause to NC

Coronavirus

12% of all Rowan cases currently active

Crime

Blotter: Concord man faces drug charges after hotel disturbance call

Crime

Rockwell teen charged with rape of a 14-year-old girl

Crime

Police: Charlotte man caught stealing funeral home employee’s truck

Local

Rowan Social Services director takes new job in New Hanover County; Heidrick to retire

Ask Us

Ask us: Will masks be required in Rowan County polling locations?

Elections

Political Notebook: Tillis, Cunningham differ on when to fill SCOTUS vacancy

Local

Local state trooper, firefighter returns home after Army deployment

Local

Blast from the past: Concordia Lutheran Church opens time capsule from previous century

Crime

Blotter: Salisbury man charged with damaging video camera, tresspassing

Crime

North Carolina man faces over 300 sex-related charges

News

Coastal flooding along Outer Banks closes roads

Nation/World

GOP hopeful Supreme Court battle will help shift election

Education

‘Better chance of succeeding’: Moody, colleagues reflect on tenure, retirement

News

Collecting garbage: Locals work to beautify High Rock Lake during Clean Sweep

Coronavirus

Salisbury man grateful parents’ story has impacted many

News

Celtics take big lead and hold on to top Heat 117-106

Business

Downtown Salisbury ‘moving swiftly’ with developers interested in Empire Hotel

Business

From fantasy to fact, Cherry builds a Hobbit House at his Treesort

Business

Biz Roundup: CSP seeking to hire 100 new employees for plant expansion

Coronavirus

Police, sheriff focus on education in addressing mask-wearing complaints

Education

Candidates for East Area school board seat have widely different views on renewal

Kannapolis

Cannon Mills’ whistle sounds again, brings nostalgia with it