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Footwork in the forest

Roberta Larew Allison, 96, does an impromptu dance during the Kanawha Valley Community Band concert at Kanawha State Forest on Father’s Day, June 18. Allison, a resident of Edgewood Summit, stood up from her wheelchair and entertained several people in the audience. She said she has danced all her life. Photo courtesy Jennifer Bauman

Many people in the audience for the Kanawha Valley Community Band concert at Kanawha Forest on Father’s Day got a little more entertainment than expected.

The band has an annual Kanawha State Forest concert during the summer each year. The audience always goes away with a good feeling after listening to the band.

During the concert this year, the band played a few danceable numbers and 96-year-old Roberta Larew Allison took the cue. Roberta uses a wheelchair and was attending the concert with her daughter, Jennifer Bauman, who is visiting from California.

As the band played on, Roberta stood in front of her chair, sometimes holding on, and did a few light steps, much to the pleasure of those sitting around her. She did her dance routine during three different numbers.

Roberta, a widow, is a longtime resident of the Charleston area and currently resides at Edgewood Summit in Charleston. When the concert ended, many in the audience approached Roberta to offer a few words of thanks. She is a follower of the community band.

The band is currently under the direction of David Williams, a longtime music instructor in Kanawha County. Williams holds three degrees from West Virginia University and is known for his ability to play, conduct and write music.

The Kanawha Valley Community Band is now on summer break and will return in the fall with its next concert.

(Submitted by Don Springer of St. Albans)


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