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Music fills the air

By Staff | Jun 6, 2014

Steel guitarist Buddy Huff plays with bandmates of Hicktown, from Belcourt, for the Rugby Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual business appreciation picnic Tuesday at the Pierce County Fairgrounds.

About 200 people braved the threat of thunderstorms in the early evening Wednesday to see Devils Lake performer Rick Senger and his 14-year-old granddaughter, Alexandria Palmer, sing under the Mark J. Carlson Memorial Gazebo.

Rains moved in and cut the show a bit short, but not before Senger and Palmer entertained the crowd with a mixture of classic country, newer country and gospel.

The performance started the 19th year of Music in the Park, sponsored by the Rugby Lions Club.

Senger belted out tunes by George Strait, Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Kris Kristofferson, Al Jackson, Neil Diamond, Lee Greenwood and more. Palmer wowed the crowd with a powerful voice as she sang Taylor Swift’s “Tim McGraw” and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”

The singers joined on the Christian hymn “How Great Thou Art.”

Alexandria Palmer, 14, sings with her grandfather, Rick Senger, during the first Music in the Park event of the year at Ellery Park on Wednesday.

Senger had the crowd clapping along and singing in one of the more fun moments of the evening as he sang “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond. He struck a more serious, reflective tone with Alan Jackson’s “Remember When” and opened the song by sharing that his 50-year class reunion is coming up and the song reminds him of his younger years.

Chamber starts summer right

About 200 people turned out to listen to Belcourt band Hicktown and a enjoy warm, breezy evening for the Rugby Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual business appreciation picnic Tuesday at the Pierce County Fairgrounds.

A chicken supper was served and attendees registered to win four family memberships to Prairie Village Museum.

“We just want to show appreciation for all the chamber members,” chamber president Rusty Gebhardt said. “We help if there’s new businesses coming to town and want to help our existing members as much as we can.”

Hicktown played at Music in the Park last year and was glad to return to Rugby.

“We had fun last year,” band member Stuart Medrud said. “No matter where we play it’s fun.”

Hicktown’s members grew up playing together and started playing again about five years ago.

The chamber will host other events this year, including a softball tournament July 12 and June 13, and Geographical Center Day on Sept. 6.

The chamber is encouraging members to visit its revamped website and utilize the opportunity to share business information at rugbynorthdakota.com. Chamber executive director Shelley Block said the board is striving to get more people to shop downtown as the community continues to see growth with more young families moving in.

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