Marching to the Moon

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Contributing Editor

Walter W. Pickut

I’ve never marched or played in a marching band. But I’ve often been amazed by how they do what they do. A crowd of three people is complicated enough for me to bump into somebody.

I can’t imagine being one of 100 people playing musical instruments and marching in step, in tune, and in a straight line all at the same time. But they’re sure fun to watch out there on the field!

So, later this week—on Saturday evening, September 17—when the Jamestown High School Red Raider Marching Band hosts bands from around New York and Pennsylvania, I plan to be there.

Please accept the Red Raiders’ invitation on page 1 of this edition of your Jamestown Gazette to experience this spectacular event in person. Watch and enjoy the music at the 43rd Annual Fall Festival of Bands as the Red Raiders once again welcome the most exciting high school bands from across the region to perform in Jamestown.

A marching band leader I once knew told me all I needed to know about those amazing, young, marching musicians. They march to a simple rule:

“Practice like you’ve never won. Perform like you’ve never lost.”

That’s an inspiring theme to apply to whatever we do every day, no matter what we’re up to or thinking of doing next.

The late, world-renowned band-master, George Parks, member of the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame and The Bands of America Hall of Fame, among other accolades, once explained his bands’ successes quite simply:

“A band is not proud because it performs well; it performs well because it is proud.”

JHS Marching Band will proudly perform their 2022 show, Lunar Odyssey on Saturday evening. Don’t miss this truly remarkable performance.

The Moon is, after all, also on many other minds these days, too, as NASA ramps up its plans to return a small but select band of humans to the lunar surface in the next few years.

In tune with that lofty initiative, the Jamestown Gazette also invites our readers to mark their calendars for Saturday evening, October 1. The Martz-Kohl Astronomical Observatory will participate in an exciting public event called the International Observe The Moon Night 2022, part of a world-wide event.

Jamestown Gazette readers are invited to come to the observatory on Saturday evening, October 1, and see the Moon in a new light.

Observe the Moon Night will be hosted by the observatory’s staff of amateur astronomers for tours, a chance to win astronomy and NASA-themed door prizes, fascinating educational programs, and a personal guided tour across the Moon through the observatory’s wide selection of telescopes.

The Moon, however, will always be more than a distant object of scientific study.

You cannot look up at the night sky on the Planet Earth and not wonder what it’s like to be up there amongst the stars. And I always look up at the moon and see it as the single most romantic place within the cosmos.

Tom Hanks

Enjoy the read.

Walt Pickut
Contributing Editor

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Walt Pickut’s writing career began with publishing medical research in1971 while working at the Jersey City Medical Center and the NYU Hospital and School of Medicine. Walt holds board registries in respiratory care and sleep technology as well as bachelor's degrees in biology and communication, and a master's degrees in physiology from Fairleigh-Dickinson University in New Jersey, with additional graduate work in mass communication completed at SUNY Amherst. He currently teaches Presentational Speaking in the Houghton College PACE program at JCC and holds memberships in the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. He lives in Jamestown with his wife Nancy, an MSW social worker, and has three children: Dr. Cait Lamberton in Pittsburgh, Bill Pickut, a marketing executive in Chicago, and Rev. Matt Pickut in Plymouth, IN.