I went to the Chrysalis Kids concert yesterday. It was a joint venture with Howard County Rec and Parks. The weather couldn’t have been more perfect. The featured musicians were a group out of DC called The Grandsons, Jr. I loved hearing the variety of instruments they used. It’s not every day that children’s performers come equipped with a saxophone.
The concert was set up using the smaller beta stage, which has really been working beautifully for the children’s performances this summer. There’s still plenty of room on the lawn for the audience, but it gives a much more intimate feel to the presentation. There were snacks and drinks available for kids and adults, plus the Kona Ice truck and face painting. And, for the more active concert goers, the ever-popular Imagination Playground was set up on the other side of the lawn.
Through the years I’ve heard many fascinating stories about what it was like to grow up as a first-generation Columbian. I wish there were a way to go back in time or have a virtual reality experience of those years. It was clearly a magical time in the history of our community.
When I go to concerts at the Chrysalis I get a sense of sharing a similar magic with my present-day neighbors and friends. The children who toddle in over the grassy hill and dance at the foot of the rounded steps of the Beta stage will carry these experiences with them all of their lives. This is their Columbia, this is their community.
(Photo credit: Karen Bradley Ehler)
Columbia summers bring us many glimpses of community: neighborhood swim leagues, Lakefront concerts and fireworks, lawn seats at Merriweather, farmer’s markets, block parties. I’m happy to see Saturday mornings with the kids at the Chrysalis joining our other beloved summer traditions.
While I have you here, take a look at some other ways to build community. Remember, these are the good old days. Of course, much depends on how good we make them.