Following the New Horizons Band — Linda Baker

Written by New Horizon’s Band member, Linda Baker

I have always loved music. Growing up, my dad waltzed me around on his feet while mom played the record player or Karl Haas’ weekly radio program – Adventures in Good Music. In 1964, I was awed by Robert Preston’s flashy band in “The Music Man” and immediately sought out Marysville high school’s band director. In my mind, nothing was prettier than a curvaceous French Horn. And, what fun we had together! However, the horn was a loaner and remained at school after I graduated.

During the next 32 years as a kindergarten teacher, I integrated music into my curriculum, creating a musically rich classroom that offered a variety of learning styles while combining my two passions: music and teaching.


Thirty-three years after graduation, I heard about New Horizons Band, sat in on a session, signed up and bought my own horn. With determination and a beginner’s book, it wasn’t long before my lip was ready once again.

Since then, the band has performed during many community events and played with other New Horizons bands. During one of these get-togethers, a fellow horn player described the fitness training she was doing for a future hiking trip through Italy. Following a rigorous workout plan, I was able to go, too. The rugged Cinque Terre trails wound their way along the stunning coastline, up through hillside olive groves and vineyards and over treacherous mountain terrain offering dramatic views of quaint coastal villages below. Nature’s musical sounds were abundant.

New Horizons Band creates new and personal challenges for its members, too. Our encouraging band directors, Pat Dempsey, and Jim Chubb, constantly guide us through a landscape of music genre including classical, gospel, musicals, marches, dance, jazz, pop, folk, country, and blues. Something for everyone!

At 69 years of age, I have been in the band for 18 years now. I really don’t know what I’d do without music. It’s always been there for me. It’s good for the soul, helps me escape problems, and, it’s great for your health — brain food without the calories.

Stop by during one of our Thursday rehearsals, 6:30- 8 PM, at the Port Huron Music Center, 2700 Pine Grove Ave. (upstairs, room # 42). And please, don’t be intimidated by our playing level. Most of our members learned to play as adults. It’s not a problem if you’ve never played an instrument or can’t read music. Simply choose an instrument and give it a little time and effort. You, too, will be joining the rest of us. We’re a fun group that comes in all shapes, sizes, backgrounds, and conditions — just like our instruments. ? Call Patrick Dempsey at (810) 300-0428.


Disclaimer: Blue Water Healthy Living is an online magazine located in Port Huron, Michigan. Our purpose is to promote healthy living by showcasing the Blue Water Area, its people, issues and surroundings. This online magazine is devoted to providing healthy living related stories, local happenings, and commentary. Often inspiring and uplifting, our stories come from our heart and soul to promote the enjoyment of a more fulfilling Blue Water Area lifestyle. The material on this web site is provided for informational and amusement purposes only and is not to be confused with any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The views and opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinions and values of Blue Water Healthy Living.

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