BEND AREA — Hundreds of people turned out Sunday to hear the sounds of the season, when the annual Bend Area C.A.R.E. Christmas Concert was held at Wahama High School.
But just as important as the entertainment, if not more so, was the over $800 the benefit raised to help area families in need. All proceeds from the concert went to the C.A.R.E. organization’s “Kids for Christmas” program. The money will be used to help purchase both gifts and meals.
The afternoon began with selections by the New Haven Elementary School (NHES) combined fifth and sixth grade band, under the direction of Emily Hall. The group played “Up on the Housetop,” “Jolly Old St. Nicholas,” and “Jingle Bells.” “Joy to the World” was the tune performed by members of the Tiger Music Orff Ensemble of NHES, under the direction of both Kimberly Bond and Rachel Reynolds.
Mary Roush, Connor Bumgarner, Abby Taylor and Lexi Layne were all soloists featured in the newly formed Wahama Glee Club. The group performed a portion of its holiday program, “Christmas on Broadway.” Under the direction of Rachel Reynolds, she noted that the group is available to perform the Christmas show at company and organization gatherings.
Kimberly Bond led the NHES Chorus in several tunes, including “African Noel,” “O Arbol De Navidad,” “The Festival,” and “Joy to the World.” Their traditional German carol of “O Come Little Children” featured Carson Gibbs and Mikie Lieving on the recorder.
The Wahama concert band, also under the direction of Emily Hall, presented the songs “Fireside Christmas,” “Carol of the Bells,” and “Silver Bells.” The finale was a special arrangement of “Christmas Spectacular March,” which the band performed at both the New Haven and Mason Christmas parades on Saturday.
The Wahama concert choir ended the concert with several numbers, including “Ding Dong! Merrily on High,” “A Christmas Lullaby,” “Dark is the Silent Night,” “Enniscorthy Carol,” “Eternal Father Strong to Save,” and “Amen! Go Tell it on the Mountain.” “Reindeer Rap” featured the choir’s males, while the females sang “Amy Grant Christmas,” with Brandie Vickers as soloist.
Director Rachel Reynolds said the choir will be singing Saturday in Charleston at the West Virginia First Lady’s Festival of Songs. (More information on this event will follow in a later edition of the Point Pleasant Register.)
During the group transitions, the Wahama Visual Arts Department had a slide show of artwork by students. Several works of art were also on display in the hallway and lobby of the gymnasium.
Accompanying the high school choir were Barbara Mitchell on piano and Mike Harbour on bass, winds and percussion. Kenny Bond, Rachel Reynolds and Emily Hall also provided percussion throughout the afternoon.
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing who can be reached at email@example.com.