FORT RILEY, Kan. – Symphony in the Flint Hills, Inc. has announced that its eighth annual event will be held at Fort Riley on Saturday, June 15, 2013.
The outdoor celebration will take place on Fort Riley’s Historic Main Post, which includes the Artillery Parade Field and Cavalry Parade Field.
Fort Riley's Garrison Commander, Colonel Bill Clark, and Marty White, board chair for Symphony in the Flint Hills, Inc. made the announcement about this year's location at a press conference on post Wednesday afternoon.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and we’re thrilled to be partnering with Fort Riley to make it happen,” said White. “This unique setting will allow concertgoers to experience an often-unseen portion of Kansas’ majestic Flint Hills – the historic Fort Riley buildings and parade grounds. The dramatic surroundings of Fort Riley are sure to add an extra dimension to an already dramatic event.”
Col. Clark said it is an "opportunity to share Fort Riley with our community."
Founded in 1853, Fort Riley is named in honor of Maj. Gen. Bennet C. Riley, the man who led the first military escort along the Santa Fe Trail and through the Flint Hills in 1829. Over the years, the installation has been home to Maj. Gen. George A. Custer; two regiments of the famed “Buffalo Soldiers;” and the 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red One), the oldest and most-storied division in the U.S. Army. Fort Riley’s size and location within the Flint Hills has allowed generations of soldiers to practice large sale maneuvers and receive live-fire training that has prepared them for action in every major conflict since World War I.
"Fort Riley is pleased to host the Symphony in the Flint Hills event in 2013. The concert and associated events provide a unique cultural opportunity for Fort Riley residents, as well as afford the opportunity for citizens of the regional community who might not otherwise visit an Army installation to discover Fort Riley," added Colonel Clark.
While the location of this year’s event is a departure from those of years past, symphony organizers feel holding the event at Fort Riley provides yet another opportunity to fulfill the organization’s mission of heightening appreciation and knowledge of the Flint Hills.
“The most noticeable difference about this year’s event is that instead of a site in a remote pasture of native prairie grass, this year’s event will be located in the middle of the historic fort buildings,” said White. “No venture into the history of the Flint Hills is complete without a stop at Fort Riley. We will have an opportunity to experience the legends and history that this fort has witnessed over the last 160 years in this portion of the Flint Hills.”
As it has been since the event debuted in 2006, the Governor of Kansas will serve as the event’s honorary chair and the Kansas City Symphony will return to perform the sunset concert. Organizers said they appreciate Capitol Federal® for its strong support as the major presenting sponsor for the third year in a row.
Officials expect some 8,000 people to travel to the area for the event, including ticket holders and volunteers. White says people come from across the country and even different parts of the world to enjoy the festivities.
Tickets for this year’s Symphony in the Flint Hills will go on sale at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 23. General admission tickets are $75 for adults and $43 for children under 12, and can be purchased online at kcsymphony.org and by phone at 816-471-0400. A limited number of Patron Packages will be available for those who want to financially support the organization while experiencing the event from a premium vantage point. For more information, call 620-273-8955.
For a complete listing of where tickets will be sold and more event information, visit symphonyintheflinthills.org.
Symphony in the Flint Hills is an annual outdoor concert series that debuted in June 2006 and has sold out every year since. The symphony moves each year to a different site in the Flint Hills. The event is organized by Symphony in the Flint Hills Inc., a grassroots non-profit organization with a mission to heighten appreciation and knowledge of the tallgrass prairie by providing opportunities to experience symphonic music and place-based education in the Kansas Flint Hills.