By Cass Rains, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
The 2013 Tri-State Music Festival had some firsts for the longtime Enid event — sleet and hail.
“The weather wasn’t the greatest. We had sleet and hail,” said Tri-State Managing Director Debbie Lambert. “We had some nice crowds. We had a few problems, but we always do.”
This year’s music festival saw larger performing groups and 21 bands marching in the annual Million Dollar Parade Saturday.
“We had an explosion of bands. We had close to 60 bands, maybe more than that,” Lambert said. “We had close to 60 choirs. The honor groups were twice as big this year.”
With a better organized office, Lambert said this year’s festival was a success, despite the setbacks with weather and logistics.
“I think as a whole, it went better than usual,” she said. “I had a lot of help. The board was great and the people in Enid helped a bunch.
“All of the churches helped out and special thanks goes to Emmanuel Baptist Church and Waller Middle School.”
Losing their original conductor for the honor band performance, Lambert complimented the 150 students on their performance.
“I really commend the honor band,” she said. “They overcame some real problems and still put the concert on.”
Tina Zollinger conducted the final performance and “did an excellent job,” Lambert said.
An Air Force Band was set to perform during the festival, but was canceled due to federal sequestration.
New additions to the Tri-State Music Festival, such as the First Friday Jazz Stroll and featured artist Edgar Cruz, both were a success, Lambert said.
“Edgar Cruz did a great job working with the students,” she said. “There was a great turnout for his concert that evening.”
She said the downtown events with local jazz bands was another event she would like to add to next year’s festival.
The results of the Tri-State Million Dollar Parade had all participating band units receiving a 1-superior: Kremlin-Hillsdale high school and middle school; Pioneer Elementary; Pioneer-Pleasant Vale high school and middle school; Garber high school and middle school; Waukomis high school and middle school; Watonga Middle School; Lomega Junior High School; Emerson, Waller and Longfellow middle schools; Fargo High School; Vici High School; Ringwood High School; Oolagah High School; and Enid High School.