Music in the Park an Inclusive Party

"We're going to take you back, way back, to the '60s..." one of the members of band Palm Drive announced on July for the weekly Music in the Park at Memorial Park. Performing songs from the 1960s to the yet-unreleased Dixie Chicks' "Long Way Around," Palm Drive and its music attracted a large crowd despite the intolerably hot weather the town experienced earlier in the day.

"I come here weekly and it's actually a very good crowd here," said La Cañada resident John Tosello, who had his hands full with his pet pig Porky. As 6-year-old Gianna Mor handled the 35-lb.. pig, children reached out to pat the oblivious Porky who busily engaged himself in eating raisins.

Porky himself seemed to represent the camaraderie between the viewers. Music in the Park resembled a large, inclusive party.

"We live just around the corner and Music in the Park is a good thing. Most people come for the socialization," said Roddey Banks of La Cañada.

On the other hand, La Cañada High School's Key Club members attend the event weekly to raise money for their group, an international service organization.

"We make a decent amount and sell things every week," said incoming senior Michelle Lee and incoming junior Julie Yu. "The money goes to the club and the charities we support."

And of course the music itself attracted viewers. Singer Barbra Chabot of South Pasadena, who sang "Long Way Around" featured a wonderful voice.

"I can't remember a time when I wasn't singing," she said with a smile. "I like to sing songs where I feel a connection to the music and the words and where I can tell a story."

Playfully struggling with Ody, a friendly 7-month-old Jack Russell, Stephanie Sepulveda of Pasadena summed up the reason behind everyone's attendance with a grin: "It's good and fun."

This Sunday, July 8, the Music in the Park summer concert series, co-sponsored by the city of La Cañada Flintridge and the La Cañada Valley Sun, features the traditional Celtic sounds of Highland Sun. Hours are 6 to 8 p.m.

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