Big Band X-Press to play Silver Anniversary Dance

Linda Saholt

News Review Correspondent

Big Band X-Press to play Silver Anniversary DanceRidgecrest’s own Big Band X-Press will celebrate its 25th anniversary Saturday, Jan. 12, at the Kerr McGee Center.

Many former band members from out of town will return to join current members for an enchanted evening of music, dancing and refreshment, beginning with free dance lessons from Ken Sanger at 6:30 p.m.

Dancing will be from 7:30-10:30 p.m., and a no-host bar will be offered. The public is invited, with tickets available for $15 each at Red Rock Books.

The 20-piece dance band will perform such favorites as “In the Mood,” “Don’t Mean a Thing” and “Sing, Sing, Sing.” Featured vocalists include Brian, Beth and Patti Cosner, Christina Scrivner and Mark Hatter.

Former members coming in from out of state to play with the band include Al Burgstahler, Ken Bergevin and Bill Harwood. Local original members still playing in the band include Stan Ricker, Conductor Dick Dickson, Scot Rogala, Roger Lacher, Darlene Carson, Mick Rindt and Hector Leon.

“We’re really excited,” said Leon. “Some of these people are coming from the East Coast for this event. They played with us when we organized 25 years ago.

“This is a very unique group, very tight-knit. Many local music teachers in high school and junior high play with us, including Mark Hatter and Simon and Lisa Austin. Our original leader, Jim McLane, who started the group and played piano, passed away, so this event for me is going to be in his honor.”

A new feature will be a silent auction during the event. Proceeds will go the group’s scholarship fund.

“Not only are they a terrific local band, but they have donated tens of thousands of dollars toward music scholarships during their 25 years in Ridgecrest,” said Christina Scrivner, organizer of the silent auction.

Included among the auction items will be tickets to dinner and a show by the band “Berlin” in Los Angeles, lunches for two with local elected officials including Sen. Jean Fuller and Sheriff Donny Youngblood, a Farris’ Diner gift card, a spa package and a pet package for pet lovers.

“Their music will never go out of style,” said Scrivner. “They are an amazing local treasure. I hired them to play at my wedding.”

The Big Band X-Press is a nonprofit organization that plays for local community events and supports music programs in local schools. Each year the band uses proceeds from its dances to pay tuition for music students to attend music camps.

For details call Patti at 760-371-4301

Story First Published: 2013-01-09