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Hill Country Community Band Will Fill Marble Falls Library with Sounds of Christmas

Jim Jarnagin plays the trumpet during last year’s Hill Country Community Band Christmas concert at the Marble Falls Public Library. The band and the library are once again joining forces to get the community into the holiday spirit with the Christmas concert at 4 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7. (There’s a library open house at 3 p.m. with refreshments.) The event is free to attend and open to the public. The library is located at 101 Main St. in Marble Falls. Staff photo by Daniel Clifton

MARBLE FALLS — The days of a librarian going “shush” may be a thing of the past to some degree, but there will definitely be no “shushing” when the Hill Country Community Band brings the sounds of the season to the Marble Falls Public Library for the annual Christmas concert.

“We look forward to this all year,” said Barbara Manton, president of the Hill Country Community Band. “The library concert is going to be all Christmas music — some of the classics and many others.”

The free concert is 4 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7, at the library, 101 Main St. An open house with refreshments starts at 3 p.m.

A bit of friendly advice: Get there early for the concert because the band really packs the house.

“It’s become one of our biggest events,” Manton said. “Each year, the library staff has to bring out more chairs. We have people who come every year, and they invite their family and bring their friends.”

The Hill Country Community Band is comprised of volunteer musicians who get together about once a week to rehearse. Manton said several people join the band who haven’t played their instrument in years, even decades, seeing it as an opportunity to jump back into something they loved.

Manton has been a pianist for years, but in high school, she played the timpani, a series of large drums. As a pianist, she worked with her children during their high school band years, becoming a regular accompanist for them and other students in University Interscholastic League events and contests.

A year or so ago, Hill Country Community Band member Mary Jane Avery approached her and asked, “Do you play a band instrument?” Manton replied she had played the timpani in her younger years, which raised Avery’s interests because they had just purchased a set for First Baptist Church of Marble Falls, which just as graciously allowed the band and Heart of Texas Orchestra to use it.

After years away from the instrument, Manton was back behind it.

It’s not just the music that draws people to the band. It’s also the camaraderie among the members, who all have a love for music and a desire to share it with each other and the community.

The band has a penchant for helping each other and assisting those who are just rediscovering their musical voices again.

Under the direction of Bo Boshears, a former U.S. Marine Corps band leader and an accomplished trumpeter, the Hill Country Community Band has begun adding more challenging pieces and arrangements to their repertoire.

“He’s really challenging us, and I think it shows,” Manton said.

The Dec. 7 concert at the library brings the Christmas spirit alive through the band’s music and enthusiasm. One thing library patrons and attendees will notice is how much the band members enjoy themselves.

Manton said it comes back to the thing that draws them together.

“We love music,” she said.

Check out the Hill Country Community Band’s Facebook page for more information on how to participate or book the group.

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