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Singing Flag Builds to its July 4 Finale

A Q&A with Calvary Temple’s performing arts ministry director.

Singing Flag moves on to its third and final day Monday with patriotism, fireworks and fun.

Concessions and Fun Zone rides at Dave Brubeck Park on Concord Boulevard open at 4 p.m., with the Singing Flags performance at 7:30, including fireworks at dusk.

The stage performance — two hours of music, dance, drama and celebrations of American freedoms — is free.

Patch had some questions for Linda Reynolds, performing arts ministry director for Calvary Temple, the sponsor of Singing Flag.

 

Why was the Singing Flag started?

Linda Reynolds: This is our 23rd year. It was mainly started as an outreach to our community. It was started as an outreach, a way celebrate our freedom, freedom in our country, freedom provided by the men and woman who fought and died for us and freedom in Christ.

 Why was Dave Brubeck Park chosen for the location?

LR: We are part of Concord. Dave Brubeck at the time was Concord Neighborhood Park. It had a natural stage built in because it was used for the Concord Jazz Festival. It just made it a convenient and natural auditorium and it was a safe neighborhood and we wanted to be part of our community.

 How many people participate?

LR: About 600 people from our church participate. We have a few guests that come in. We bring in a guest singer. We like to say that we are armatures. The actual definition of armature means 'for the love of.' So that’s what we choose to call ourselves, armatures.

 How much does it cost to put on the show?

LR: We really don’t disclose that but it is quite costly. We provide every bit of the funding for the Singing Flag. We do request donations, we accept donations and we take donations online. The public is very generous. We sell concessions to make up the difference. There has been a few questions by the public: Who pays for the police, who pays for the fire? We do.

 There’s been talk of moving the show to the pavilion?

LR: Years ago, we were asked to move to the pavilion. We looked at the venue. Even though it’s a great venue, we decided it’s not quite the venue for us. We think it would lose the family-friendly feel. We think the people out on the grass, they are very close. The paid parking, using their concession people, it would hurt our costs. Also, we try very hard to make it a free gift to the community.

 The show’s script changes?

LR: The show does change from year to year to keep it fresh. We are bringing back some of our favorites such as Popeye, Yogi Bear, Men In Black, a few old dances, 'Happy Days' things that are nostalgic.

The script changes to work with political times or social changes?

LR: On the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s death, we highlighted that. We talked about our freedom, freedom for all, freedom and equality.

We are not political per se. We stay away from politics in this venue because we want to build a bridge. We’re just looking for ways for us to have common ground. This year we are highlighting Sept. 11 because it’s the 10th anniversary. So anything that’s commemorative like that, that we are positively focused on, we will highlight.

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