Silver Wings Band kicks off on-post summer concert series
Members of the Fort Rucker 98th Army “Silver Wings” Band practice last summer to prepare for the Freedom Fest concert. The band will kick off a summer concert series on post June 10 with Music Under the Alabama Stars.

FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Summer band concerts are coming to Fort Rucker beginning June 10.

Maj. Gen. Anthony G. Crutchfield, U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker commanding general, invites post Soldiers, Families and community members to join him for a relaxing evening of Music Under the Alabama Stars starting at 6:30 p.m. on Howze Field.

“I envision a relaxed atmosphere for our families. A park full of lawn chairs, Frisbees, children and pets (leashed pets that is) running around. A way to say ‘thanks for your hard work’ by enjoying the great music of our band,” Crutchfield said.

The 98th Army “Silver Wings” Band will perform about 20 minutes of patriotic music followed by a traditional Streamer Ceremony, featuring re-enactors from the Wiregrass area. The evening will conclude with a rock concert and should last about an hour and a half, according to CW4 Jesse Pascua, bandmaster.

“The music is ready, and I’m tweaking the script. I encourage Families to arrive early with their blankets, lawn chairs and coolers to settle in a nice shady spot,” Pascua said.

The Streamer Ceremony is traditionally conducted in celebration of the June 14 Army Birthday, according to Pascua.

“When the 13 original colonies began their fight for freedom at Lexington, they had neither an established army nor a national flag,” Pascua said. “Militia units of this period had local banners, which reflected in many cases the sentiment of the times. Banners included mottos such as ‘Hope,’ ‘Liberty,’ ‘Don’t Tread on Me,’ and symbolic representations such as snakes, beavers, pine trees and anchors.

“The Army flag as we have come to know it today was dedicated and unfurled for the first time by then-Vice President Richard Nixon on the Army’s 181st birthday, June 14, 1956, at Independence Hall, Philadelphia, Pa.,” he added.

“The 178 streamers attached to the Army flag represent campaigns fought by Soldiers throughout our nation’s history. Each streamer is embroidered with the designation of the campaign and year in which it occurred. The colors of the streamers are derived from campaign ribbons authorized for service during that action or war,” Pascua said.

“The Army flag and its multi-colored streamers are symbolic of the heroism, valor, courage and dedication of patriots who served our nation in time of need. Our Army was there at the birth of the nation and serves today, as a beacon of light around the world in the cause of liberty,” he said.

Page last updated Thu June 2nd, 2011 at 00:00