Paula & Tim Miller
The Carriage House Inn
Friday nights in Chatham beginning towards the end of June until the first weekend in September brings the Chatham Band concerts to the gazebo in Kate Gould Park at 8:00PM on Main Street in downtown, Chatham, the event is approximately 1 mile from the Carriage House Inn. Started in the 1930’s, the band concert is free and brings people of all ages from miles around to enjoy a slice of small town America.
This very popular event attracts upwards of several hundred to a thousand people (many stake a claim early in the day with a blanket or beach chair). The band plays some songs that you would not think of a brass band playing such as The Simpsons Theme, James Bond Theme and Mama Mia! They also do quite a bit of sing along with the audience.
Legend has it that in the 1950’s a patron got up in the middle of the concert and stated that the current gazebo was too small for the 40 piece band. He immediately took up a collection from the other concert goers and got enough donations in that one night to build the bigger bandstand that stands to this day.
My favorite part of this occasion is the relaxed family atmosphere and the people watching: little kids trying to maneuver around a big ice cream cone or try out their first dance moves while attached to a big balloon or glow stick and older folks getting some fresh air waxing nostalgic about times gone by. This whole scene I would describe as wonderfully corny and yet peaceful & familiar. It is a connection to our past before the advent of hi tech everything. A slower paced life to sit back and reflect, enjoy and daydream.