The Prescott Opry invites the community to join its Valentine's Day eve show that promises country tunes, along with a glimpse of Arizona's history as the Valentine State Thursday, Feb. 13, at the Elks Opera House.
Once known as the "Baby State," because it was the nation's 48th to enter the Union, there was a time when Arizona's nickname was the Valentine State, commemorating its gaining statehood on Feb. 14, 1912. Arizona is now called the Grand Canyon State to reflect its greatest tourist attraction, the Grand Canyon, one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
Special guest Melissa Ruffner, a Prescott historian, will share Arizona's colorful history during the Opry's musical tribute on the eve of the state's birthday.
The show begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $17, with senior, group and student discounts available. Buy tickets by calling the Elks Opera House box office at 777-1370 or going online to www.elksoperahouse.com.
The concert will feature 3 Wheel Drive, Paul Rogers, Kylee and Cole Driescher and Opry regulars, the Brush Arbor Revival.
The 3 Wheel Drive band has been performing in the Phoenix area since moving from Decatur, Ill., in 1970, Denny Sarver said.
"Our preference in music has always been the traditional country style," Sarver said. The ensemble played the nightclub scene for many years and has been the back-up band for such Nashville stars as George Jones, Patsy Cline, Buck Owens and Loretta Lynn.
"We retired from the six-night-a-week music jobs several years ago and have been the official band for the Marty Robbins Tribute show that was held in Glendale, Ariz., for many years and which has now moved to Willcox, Ariz., the first Saturday of March every year. The entire 3 Wheel Band was inducted into the Greater Arizona Country and Western Swing Music Association in 2009.
For the Opry show, the 3 Wheel Band will be performing five Marty Robbins songs, two Sons of the Pioneers songs and one Bob Wills song, Sarver said.
Rogers, an Arizona native, was a bouncer for a short time, when he worked the club scene with his bandleader brother, Dave Rogers. Paul worked the door until it was time to go onstage and sing the first two songs he had learned, "Walk on By" and "I Still Miss Someone."
He said he hasn't stopped singing since. His own band has bucked such artists as Rose Maddox, Freddie Hart, Bobby Austin, Susan Raye, Buddy Owens and Tommy Collins.
When he's played the Reno, Nev., music scene, he's opened for Buck Owens.
The Drieschers are the Opry's featured young singers for the Thursday show.
Opry folks say, "Be prepared to be knocked out by this dynamic brother and sister team."
Kylee is 17 and Cole, 15, and both are accomplished musicians. She plays upright bass and he plays the guitar.
The Chino Valley students began their music careers just four years ago as a way to honor their great grandfather, a guitar enthusiast, himself.
The Brush Arbor band will return to the stage to play gospel favorites, mixed with family friendly humor.