Archive for June, 2010

Last night my son and I enjoyed what has become one of our favorite summer traditions: Hot Summer Sounds.  The City of Temple (and many other sponsors) host local and regional bands every Friday night throughout June and July.  When we moved here three years ago and were on the hunt for good, wholesome, fun, and inexpensive family friendly entertainment, Hot Summer Sounds fit the bill.

I love our routine.  We pack up the cooler with a crisp, refreshing wine-spritzer for me, some Crystal light for my boy, snacks, and fresh fruit.  Into my enormous LLBean bag, I stuff a sun hat, bug spray, camera, stale bread, glow sticks, towel and a change of clothes.  The lawn chairs stay in the back of the SUV at this time of year, so we head out for Miller Springs Park.  We scope out a spot for our chairs with friends and then Michael Charles and I head over to the splash pad for a while.  We finally make our way over to where our friends are as the music fills the park with an infectious, positive mood.  When the band takes a break, we head over the pond to feed the ducks and take a stroll.  Eventually, we make our way back to the chairs and sing along to songs we’ve heard a thousand times, and can’t wait to hear again. 

Over the past few years, we’ve enjoyed musical variety ranging from classic rock to country, zydeco to contemporary christian, jazz to 50s rockabilly.  I love that I can spend a relaxing Friday night with family and friends for several hours without spending a dime!  I love that my son is surrounded by multiple generations from various lifestyles and backgrounds, who all came to the park for the same reason.  For a snapshot in time, this community gathering is a great equalizer and uniter.  It is a sense of country, community, home. 

As a look out over the crowd, some swaying, others holding hands, children chasing fireflies, girlfriends with no dates dancing with each other because they just don’t care, I am filled with such a sense of hope.  I know it seems cliché, but I think that if we can bring several hundred, possibly a thousand people together, who are only focusing on what they have in common, there might be some hope for this country after all.  It won’t be the “hope” promised by politicians or campaign slogans, but the kind that comes from the strong sense of community and love for our nation and for its people.  The kind of hope that comes from within.  In a time with the budgets of local governments across the country are hemorrhaging, I pray that this event will not lose its funding and sponsorship.  Hot Summer Sounds is about so much more than a concert.  It is about a community of people coming together out of a common love: the love of music, the love of traditions, the love of their town.


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