Paul's Note - April 15, 2022

It’s getting to be that time of year when coming out at night is a more attractive proposition than hanging out during the day. Here on the east side, we’ve had a wonderful option for over 30 years. 

It started in the spring of 1990. The Arizona Symphonic Winds and all volunteer concert band of 60 musicians under the direction of Laszlo Veres performed at the Dedication Ceremony of the newly built Udall Park Center and from that day on performed continuously concerts in both spring and fall. 

Since 1990 these free to the public "Music in the Park" concerts on Saturday nights have become a Tucson tradition.  As of today, the band has performed 247 concerts at the stage of Laszlo Veres Amphitheater, named after the group's founder and conductor. 

The band repertoire includes Broadway show tunes, marches, orchestral transcription, movie themes, standard concert band literature, novelties and other types of music.  The band frequently showcases both professional and amateur soloists as well as talented young performers keeping an old American tradition of free concerts in the park for our community. 

This year’s shows will be May 14, 21, 38, and June 4. All performances start at 7 pm at the Lazlo Veres Amphitheater at Udall Park. There is never an admission charge, but you should bring a comfortable folding chair & a picnic dinner. 

I love to talk about local sports; you know that. I want to offer my support to FC Tucson, our local professional soccer team, for their defeat of the Las Vegas Lights in their first US Open Cup game this year. 

For those who don’t know soccer, traditionally every place in the world that plays has a league championship, like the Super Bowl or World Series, but there is a second “cup” championship, which teams from all levels compete in. Imagine if there was a second baseball championship where minor league teams got the chance to see how they would do against the Boston Red Sox or Los Angeles Dodgers. 

So, while they are playing games in their regular league, FC Tucson is playing for a paralell championship, the US Open Cup, which has been going since 1914.

FC Tucson plays in the third tier of American pro soccer, and Las Vegas is second tier. Despite that, our team pulled off an underdog win, called a “cupset.” FC Tucson still has at least one game to go before facing off with the big boys (as they did in 2013), but I’ll be pulling for them as they take on Cal United on Tuesday. 

FC Tucson will always have a special place in my heart. I helped bring together the group that originally founded the team in 2010 and brought MLS preseason to Tucson.  

In a few weeks, our Boys in Black could be facing off against a Major League Soccer team. I like our chances.