The most rewarding aspect of having learned music as a child is the joy of continuing to play with other music-minded people.

When my daughter Julia was a few months old, I joined the North Coast Symphony Orchestra, then directed by the multitalented Karen McCormick. I snugged Julia into the baby backpack, and we'd both take part in the Tuesday night practices. She never cried or fussed during rehearsals - and only interrupted my playing when her arm grew long enough to reach over my shoulder and pull my flute away from my mouth.

Karen moved away a couple of years ago, leaving a void for those of us who loved to bring the classics to life with strings, reeds, brass and drums. Fortunately, enough supporters kept the orchestra's spark alive and found a new director, cellist Collin Heade of the Oregon Chamber Players and the Willamette Falls Symphony. The group re-emerged last fall as the North Oregon Coast Symphony.

Encouraged by the support and response from the community, the symphony offers its spring community concert at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 14 at the Community Presbyterian Church in Cannon Beach.

The program includes works by Mozart, Corelli, Tschaikowsky and Boyce. Admission is by donation at the door; proceeds fund efforts with the purchase of music, rental of rehearsal space and other expenses.

"This nucleus of musicians is transforming this new group, over the last few months, into what is surely becoming a true musical gem on the North Coast," said Heade. "I'm extremely proud to be part of this adventure with them."

The NOCS will perform the same program at 3 p.m. Sunday, June 12 at the Bay City Arts Center in Bay City. For more information, call (503) 368-7160 or (503) 355-1111.

Do you have a suggestion for how readers can enjoy their weekend on the coast? Send comments by Monday the week of publication to Coast Weekend, P.O. Box 210, Astoria, OR 97103 or e-mail kstrecker@dailyastorian.com

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