The Venice Concert Band celebrated Veterans with a sensational “Honor America” concert at the Venice Performing Arts Center. Soprano Doreen Curp energized the audience with beautiful renditions of the Star Spangled Banner, God Bless America and the Battle Hymn of the Republic. She did raise the roof.

Daniel Bowles led the band in a rousing “American Patrol.”

Under the direction of Bob Miller, all healed from his surgeries, the band sounded loud and clear and captivated the American spirit. Bob’s selection of music for the evening gave the audience a clear picture of what honoring America sounds like. Bravo to all involved in a terrific evening honoring America and veterans.

Special thanks to the person who helped the wounded warrior stand during the military salute. You are one of the reasons we love our veterans.

Visit veniceconcertband.org for tickets and info. The next concert is scheduled for Dec. 3.

Saluting veterans

Anyone who is around veterans knows they are terrific, low-key and not show-boaters. They are usually joking around and poking fun at each other and dedicated in their love for America. They hang out at their posts and at the Friendship Center in Venice.

This year, director of the center Tom Harlow prepared a special afternoon that included music, a video about veterans, special remembrances and food. Everyone at the center had fun, as always, listening, playing cards and games, dancing and their favorite — talking and telling stories.

One of our best

The special person of this week is one of the veterans honored on Nov. 11, Michael Fiore. Everyone who knows Michael appreciates a happy person who welcomes the chance to fill the hills of Venice with music. He proves that passion for playing a musical instrument and singing help make life fun. It also warms people’s hearts.

Michael does not just participate but is actively involved with his group’s fundraising and planning events. He sings with Encore who perform regularly at parties and special events raising money for scholarships for area music students.

Michael enjoys time with family and friends and special events like the recent Venice Symphony Gala. He is one of the veterans who continues a life of service even when he stopped wearing the uniform. We are proud to salute Michael along with the other Venice veterans. They are the ones who make Venice a great place to live.

Fran Valencic is the social columnist for the Venice Gondolier Sun. She welcomes your tips and ideas. Contact Fran at franvalencic@comcast.net.

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