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Marty's Goldenaires gears up for busy summer schedule


May 4, 2018

Daily Globe file photo

MARTY'S GOLDENAIRES Drum and Bugle Corps performs on Silver Street in Hurley during Festivale Italiano, annually held on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend.


Bessemer - Marty's Goldenaires Drum and Bugle Corps is preparing for another busy summer season.

Some locals got a sneak peak at the 2018 corps at last weekend's Vietnam Veterans steak feed at the Hurley American Legion, and Marty's public relations officer, Pearce Graham, released the corps' full schedule this week.

A return to the American Legion National Convention in Minneapolis Aug. 26-27 is certainly a highlight of the coming season, said Graham. "That's something we're really looking forward to."

He said they've been to the national convention before, once in Minneapolis and also visiting Nashville and Indianapolis.

Marty's will play a concert for the Michigan delegation at the convention on one evening and participate in the big parade in downtown Minneapolis.

The corps is headed to the Appleton Flag Day Parade on June 9. It's the largest Flag Day parade in the country, according to Graham. He said they've been invited for a number of years, but sometimes they can't make it because of scheduling conflicts. This year, they hope to go, but are still working on a price for transportation. "We're really trying to get down there, one way or another," he said.

The parade is about three miles long, with more than 100 units from all over. Following the parade, there is a concert that Marty's will participate in, and so will one of the U.S. armed forces bands, said Graham.

Marty's will return to Bridgefest in Houghton this summer on June 15. "We don't do it every year, but we like to go there," Graham said. This year it's on the Houghton side of the bridge, as it alternates with a Hancock route every other year. Besides the parade, Graham said they will probably play in a few establishments in downtown Houghton and perform at the local Rotary Club's seafood fest fundraiser along the Portage Canal.

New this year, Marty's will perform in Ironwood's Depot Park as part of a senior citizens' walk that ends at the Depot on Thursday, June 21. "We haven't played in Depot Park in a number of years," he said. "We're looking forward to that."

Hayward's Muskyfest is another annual event on Marty's schedule, set for Saturday, June 24.

"We go every year. The Hayward Vets Club is like home base. They're so good to us there," said Graham. "We do a concert there after the parade and they treat us just like the Bessemer Legion does - it's just like being at home."

Marty's will also help celebrate the Fourth of July locally with a performance before the Ramsay fireworks on July 2, and then July 4 performances in Marenisco, Wakefield and Bessemer.

"It's nice to play in our hometown," Graham said.

Also on the schedule is a parade in Spooner, Wis., on July 7, as part of that community's annual rodeo. Last year they encountered the University of Wisconsin marching band there and had a great time, said Graham. "Always fun to play with those kids. Boy, there's some dedication there."

Marty's will also be part of the annual U.P. Firefighters tournament, this year in Caspian. The corps will participate in the Friday, July 27, evening dress parade and the nightshirt parade later that evening.

Flambeau-rama on Sunday, Aug. 5, also includes a parade and concert afterwards in Park Falls. "It's a very nice event there," Graham said.

Marty's annual fundraising picnic will be Saturday, Aug. 18, at Bluff Valley Park in Bessemer. The event includes lots of food, refreshment and music, as well as games for the kids and raffles.

The corps will also visit several area nursing homes later in summer. "We've done that for years and the people really appreciate it. That's something that is a little give-back to the community," said Graham.

Marty's will wrap up its season as usual with a pair of events over Labor Day weekend - first on Saturday, Sept. 1, with an afternoon concert at Festivale Italiano on Silver Street in downtown Hurley and then Sunday in Ontonagon, participating in the Labor Fest parade and offering another concert afterwards.

"We really enjoy playing that concert in Hurley with the people all around us and up close. We like to interact with the audience," said Graham. "And that parade in Ontonagon is just great with all the bands and the floats are something else. We really enjoy being a part of that."

The corps lists 44 members. Dan Pitrone is musical director. His son, Dustin Pitrone, is assistant director.

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