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Our View: Concert shows residents want vibrant plaza

Saturday's well-received performance by the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West's Travis Brass Quintet hints at a bright future for downtown Crescent City. On a day when rain was predicted, about 200 folks found their way to downtown's best kept secret, the gathering place around the fountain. The audience represented a cross section of Del Norters who came to listen to the music, socialize, relax and have fun. With lawn chairs, dogs on leashes, and children excited to take off their socks and shoes to step barefoot in the fountain, the town came out, and so did the sun.

The band members said Crescent City was the biggest turn out on their tour so far. They were delighted with the crowd and with the venue. Sure, there was some concern about rain, but the back up plan was to move the band a few feet under one of the canopies. The audience would have had to find shelter under them as well.

The audience stayed engaged for the entire concert, which lasted about 90 minutes. They smiled, laughed and applauded.

But Saturday's event was not perfect. With the library closed for the afternoon, there was not a nearby public restroom. One attendee complained that coffee would have been nice, but there was no coffee shop or restaurant open near the plaza. A volunteer came by the venue before the concert to pick up trash, and organizers stayed late to dispose of a remarkably small amount of litter.

With the water now flowing in the fountain and city crews sprucing up the adjacent grounds, this is the time to keep the momentum going. Organizers of the next concert – and there are people planning future events already – will need to address restrooms and refreshments, set-up and clean-up. But for a first-time event, and for a test, Saturday's Travis Brass Quintet performance gets an A+ for effort, attendance and interest.

Our hats off to the band of talented musicians, and to the men, women and children who shared the afternoon with them in the sun of downtown Crescent City.

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