Saturday, July 10, 2010
Southern Tour Diary 2010
Friday, June 11:
Our travels took us to Charleston, West Virginia, courtesy of our bus driver, Miss Marian, with a stop at Golden Corral (and some music study) along the way.
The evening concert at the Baptist Temple allowed us to perform with the Appalachian Children's Chorus and Chattanooga Boy's Choir, and to meet and greet them at an ice cream social afterward. Then we were matched up with some fantastic families for home stays.
Saturday, June 12:
This was a big driving day, starting in Charleston, West Virginia and ending in Alpharetta, Georgia. There, we enjoyed pizza and wings before getting ready for our concert at the Alpharetta Presbyterian Church. The concert was well-received, and we again were matched with some wonderful host families who made us feel very welcome.
Sunday, June 13:
Sunday morning brought us back to the Alpharetta Presbyterian Church for an amazing brunch prepared by a chef who is a church member. The choir and Mr. Mollard then contributed to musical selections during the worship service.
After changing clothes, we headed to the incredible aquarium in Atlanta, where we spent the early afternoon watching (and touching) the many sea creatures there. After a stop at the mall for some shopping and dinner, we were reunited with our Alpharetta hosts for another evening of friendship-building.
Monday, June 14:
Monday's travels took us up into Tennessee to the Appalachian Museum for lunch and a visit to the many indoor and outdoor displays. This was really an interesting place and several of us agreed that this would be a place that we would like to visit again sometime in the future.
After checking into our hotel in Pigeon Forge, TN, we had a family-style dinner at the Old Mill Restaurant, featuring corn fritters, chicken, pot roast, ham, mashed potatoes, beans, and our choice of peach cobbler, pecan pie or chocolate cake.
Then we headed off to some shopping in the Old Mill Historic Square near the restaurant.
After returning to the hotel, many chose to swim in the hotel pool before turning in for the evening.
Tuesday, June 15:
After having breakfast in the hotel, we loaded up the bus and took a short drive to Dollywood for a very fun day.
Despite the heat and humidity, we enjoyed roller coasters, water rides, shows, food, shopping, and for some of us, a ride on a real steam train. The free ice water at the concession stands was greatly appreciated by all.
Then it was off to Norris, TN for a big potluck dinner and more friend-making at Norris Religious Fellowship. Our concert went quite well (with expressive, energetic faces) even though we had a very full day. The evening was spent with friendly host families in a beautiful town where people are proud of the fact that they still see each other at the post office where they pick up their mail.
Wednesday, June 16:
Today we had breakfast with our host families and reconvened to travel a short distance to the American Museum of Science and Industry in Oak Ridge, TN. We learned about some of the government's current scientific research (the non-secret stuff anyway) and had a chance for some hair-raising experiences with a Van de Graaff generator (see the Photo Album for more about that). There were lots of interesting displays and things to do there, and this was another place where many of the singers would like to return.
After some northerly driving, we arrived at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Oxford, OH for rehearsal time, followed by check-in at the Baymont Inn and dinner at some area fast food restaurants. Our final concert was an emotional one, as our seven seniors donned their vests for the last time. The audience was very appreciative and the music was beautiful, although the last two songs were difficult for many to sing-- not just the seniors.
After the concert, the newbies were officially sworn in as veterans by Mrs. Jacobs on the bus ride back to the hotel.
While the non-seniors enjoyed one last swim at the hotel, the seniors were treated to an evening out at Buffalo Wild Wings via taxi, where we had a great time sharing stories, laughing, and enjoying appetizers and desserts.
Thursday, June 17:
Our last day seems to have come so quickly!
We enjoyed a slightly later start today, with breakfast at the Baymont Inn and a short bus ride to Miami University for a tour given by some friendly student guides. We had the opportunity to see portions of the school of music and music library, a theater, ice rink and (of course) the campus gift shop.
Following a relaxed lunch at Bob Evans, we hit the home stretch and greeted friends and family back at Coventry High School. Although it’s always good to be back home, we’ve had a wonderful tour with lots of great experiences, new friends, and fantastic music.