The talent and hard work of Turlock music students will be on display Saturday at the annual Festival of the Green.
What started as a Turlock Unified School District-wide recital has turned into a day-long celebration at Pitman High School that highlights the many musical programs offered through the District. Over 1,500 students from 5th through 12th grade will perform with choir, orchestra and band programs.
There will also be an outdoor stage that will feature a number of different student dance groups, talent show performances and plays, such as members of the cast from Dutcher Middle School's "Aladdin Jr."
"It's such a wonderful opportunity for them to work together and to see the progression in skills from 5th grade through high school," said TUSD Assistant Superintendant for Educational Services Heidi Lawler.
"Students who are involved in music are successful in school and life," she continued. "It also promotes collaboration and teamwork."
Among the 1,500 music students will be members of the Pitman High Wind Ensemble, which will be performing at the National Invitational Band and Orchestra Festival at Carnegie Hall in New York on March 25.
Another highlight of Saturday's event will be the orff instrument.
"This year for the first time we will have students perform with the orff instrument, a small percussion instrument similar to a xylophone. Orffs have been an option for classroom music programs," said Lawler.
Over 35 booths will be set up on the Pitman High campus featuring different educational programs, Parent Teacher Associations, student organizations and community resources. Student fine art works will also be on display at the event.
There will be food available for purchase from the Turlock Education Foundation. The proceeds from the food booth sales will go to the Foundation's musical instrument repair program for the District.
"Our goal this year is to donate $5,000 to our musical instrument repair fund," said TEF president Barney Gordon.
To continue their fundraising efforts, Gordon said that Dominos in Turlock will donate 20 percent of sales on Saturday, Sunday and Monday when customers mention the Turlock Education Foundation.
The Festival on the Green will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday at Pitman High School, 2525 W. Christoffersen Parkway. Choir is set to perform at 10 a.m., Orchestra I at 12:30 p.m., Orchestra II at 2:30 p.m., Band I at 3:30 p.m. and Band II at 4:30 p.m. inside the Pitman gym.
"I've been an audience member for very long time, and I appreciate all the work our music educators do," said Lawler.