SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

September 5, 2013

Couple mark 50th anniversary with public concert

NEWBURYPORT — A Newburyport couple are planning to celebrate their milestone anniversary in a really big way.

Betsy and Jonathan Woodman, who will mark 50 years of marriage this fall, have organized a free jazz concert this Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at First Religious Society.

“It’s a gift to the community,” Betsy Woodman said. “We have really deep roots here.”

“It’s our opportunity to give back to the people who have given us a lot,” Jonathan Woodman said.

The Woodmans, who are both 71, also want to shine the spotlight on local musicians, including drummer Les Harris Sr. and baritone saxophonist Danny Harrington, whom they describe as “institutions in this community.”

Harris is a retired Berklee College of Music professor who lives in Newburyport and still teaches at West Newbury School of Music. He has performed with a number of jazz greats, including Gene Krupa, Bobby Hackett, Zoot Sims and Dinah Washington.

Harrington is a Newburyport resident who has been teaching at Berklee for 35 years. He is the former president of the Firehouse Center for the Arts, which he helped develop 22 years ago.

“We have the best of the best playing Saturday night,” Betsy said. “It’s not just a concert. It’s a concert that’s going to be memory-making.”

The concert isn’t the Woodmans’ only gift to the community. They have made a sizable donation to the Newburyport Education Foundation in honor of Harris Sr., who will be presented with a plaque on Saturday night. The money will be earmarked for enhancements to the music program at Newburyport High School.

During Saturday’s concert, Harris will be joined by both his son, Les Harris Jr., who is also a drummer and Berklee graduate, and Les Jr.’s daughter, Aubrey Harris, a 16-year-old bass player who performed with Keith Urban at last year’s American Country Awards and will attend Berklee on a full scholarship next fall.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News

AP Video
13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp
Comments Tracker