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By: Brendan McDonough
Reporter for North Tonawanda
People in North Tonawanda will now have one more place to enjoy outdoor concerts. The Mayor Along with other city officials held a ribbon cutting ceremony to launch the opening of the new Band Shell. It is located at Raymond Klimek Veterans Park on River Road and is designed for people of all ages to enjoy.
“This year when we do our easy listening concert series, we will be entertained and watching with this new beautiful venue and an equally new beautiful Band Shell,” said Rich Andres, Niagara County Legislature.
Money to pay for it came from a grant from the Niagara River Greenway Commission. The structure is made from solid cedar wood and cost just under $ 100,000 to build. For many it is a welcome addition to the neighborhood. “I think it is wonderful, the more opportunities the better for us to take advantage of the nice parks in our area, I will be here attending the different events at the Band Shell,” Deb Wachowicz, North Tonawanda Resident.
It not just a place for concerts, organizers say they plan to have exercise classes here, religious services, a family fun night is also planned here in August. Before this was built, an old trailer was brought in every week for the various events, but it got damaged during a wind storm.
In addition to having several family fun events, many hope the new band shell will also help to bring the community together.
“When we talk about banding, we bring people together, we band animals to sometimes count them, when you are married you wear a wedding band because it brings us together, it is a symbol of coming together. A band is bringing people together here at the Park we are going to do a lot of banding this summer,” said Mayor Art Pappas
For veterans it is a place that they hope many people will come to and enjoy different events but also a time for people to remember those soldiers who paid the ultimate price. “We have been developing this into a veteran’s area, the more events can have at Veterans Park the better, so that when people attend a band concert or theatrical production, can also walk over to the monuments and pay homage to the men and women that served in the armed forces,” said David Jakubaszek, Honor Guard Member.
City officials have a few finished touches to make at the Band Shell. Some planters and a sign will be added. Giving people across North Tonawanda one more place to come together.
“To all of you, this is your band shell, this this your park. Especially to our veterans. This is a great investment to Raymond Klimek Veterans Park, it’s another way we can pay testament to those who have worn the uniform and served our country,” said Senator Robert Ortt 62nd District Senator.