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Hawaiian performers schedule free concert

A rare treat is coming our way, southern Minnesota. A free community concert is happening at Community Bandshell Park on June 21.

Zenshin Daiko, a non-profit group of 40 performers ages 6-17, is coming straight from Makawao, Hawaii, to put on this concert. Zenshin Daiko is dedicated to teaching taiko to children and sharing with the community (in this case, global community.) Taiko means "great" or "wide" drum. The children perform amazingly on these tremendously large drums, and the sound is absolutely amazing. The group is coming to our area to perform in the Rochesterfest parade to honor former Rochester Mayor Chuck Hazama, who is Hawaiian.

During the Austin phase of the group's trip here, we will be taking members on tours of our world-famous Spam Museum, which is widely known in Hawaii, and the group members tell us they are proud to be "big Spam fanatics." After the tour, they will tour the Hormel Institute, also known around the world for its cutting edge and ongoing cancer research. Later in the afternoon of June 21, we will be serving them Spamburgers, after which they will be performing for our entire region at the band shell below Skinners’ Hill. In case of rain or other inclement weather, our alternate location will be the Paramount Theatre. There are many sponsors to thank for this event, including the Rochester Convention and Visitors Bureau for partnering with us, local attractions and businesses for their support and donations, and to our excellent and willing CVB board members, who will be helping us cook and serve dinner to the approximately 50 Zenshin Daiko performers and organizers. Special thanks go to Austin Department of Parks, Recreation and Forestry staff for co-sponsoring this event with us; Jim Stiles and Super Fresh Produce; Todd Hepler and Hy-Vee; Nicole Behne and Hormel Foods Corp.; the Paramount staff; and Joel Nelson and Nelson Sound.

Bruiser and Spammy will be part of the activity that evening, as well. It’ll be a wonderful show, great evening of entertainment and fun meeting these young performers who are coming so far for this event. Make sure you bring lawn chairs or blankets to enjoy the show.

Other events that are happening in and around the Austin area in June include:


June 1-3:Ninth annual flea market at the Mower County Fairgrounds.

• June 4-6: The American Red Cross Bloodmobile will be at Sterling State Bank for

blood donations, 1 p.m.-7 p.m. Monday and noon-6 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.

• June 10-14:Fourth annual Gifted and Talented Symposium at Riverland Community College.

• June 13:Austin Big Band’s Concert in the Park, Community Bandshell Park, 7:30 p.m.

• June 17-23:Riverland Community College presents "The Sound of Music," 7:30 p.m. performances and 2 p.m. Sunday.

• June 23:Summer Solstice Ecoblitz, fun family day of nature-related outdoor activities to celebrate summer at the Jay C. Hormel Nature Center.

• June 23-24:MeadowFest Sesquicentennial Civil War Celebration. This event hosted by Mower County Historical Society is open to everyone.


• June 28:The Hormel Institute will host the first of three public open houses of their research facility over summer.

Contact our office for full details on who to call for information related to times and tickets for each of the above events. More events come to our attention everyday!

Please call us at the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau office for events and information at 437-4563. If you or your group, church, organization or attraction have something special planned, let us help you advertise it. Make the MOST of all Austin has to offer! Enjoy!

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