MASON CITY, IA - This Saturday is when the annual event is scheduled, but recent weather conditions have some concerned if it will be “all systems go.”
Band Festival combines the sights and sounds of Music Man, and brings it to the streets of Mason City. It’s an event that coordinator, Robin Anderson looks forward to all year.
“We have great music in north Iowa and this is an opportunity to not only give free family entertainment for people to enjoy in the park but the parade each year really showcases our young people,” said Anderson, Executive Director of Mason City Chamber of Commerce.
Recent weather conditions may play a reason in what you can expect this Saturday.
For event coordinators, they remember how quickly weather can change but this time around, they have a plan.
“We all have the good memory of the 2008 flood and how quickly things can change. So when we saw the Winnebago River in East Park starting to come up, we thought it would be a good idea to have a contingency plan,” said Anderson.
That flood served as an example of how dramatically weather can change something officials say they’re keeping a close eye on, but are optimistic about.
“I’ve been out for the last three days checking all the river gauges throughout the county and the area, and now it seems to be slowly going down. So if it continues as is, we should be okay,” said Steve O’Neil, Emergency Management Coordinator for Cerro Gordo and Franklin County.
Being ready however only goes so far. Band Festival presents some unique challenges that emergency management coordinator Steve O’Neil says will be taken into account.
“It’s not like a concert where everybody is grouped together on place. You’re talking about something that starts downtown and goes all the way to the high school. There are thousands of people stretched out,” said O’Neil.
While they did come up with a backup plan, they’re still sticking with East Park.
Festivities on Saturday begin with the 75 North Iowa Band Festival Parade at ten in Downtown Mason City.