The 257th Army Band, known as “The Band of the Nation’s Capital,” will be performing on Court Street July 8, 2010.

Mayor Carolyn Rader and SFC Brian McCommon have announced plans for a major community event this July.

The 257th Army Band, known as “The Band of the Nation’s Capital,” will be performing on Court Street July 8, 2010. The 50-member band, comprised of part-time members of the National Guard, will visit Ripley as part of its Community Relations Tour through Pennsylvania and West Virginia this summer.

McCommon, chief of operations and media relations as well as trombonist for the band, said the group plays a variety of music – classics, jazz, pop, and patriotic – to appeal to everyone’s tastes.

In addition, the band takes time during each concert to recognize area veterans and encourages their participation in the event. He also said a special invitation is extended to Ripley and Ravenswood High School bands to attend.

“We’ve had so much success coming into ‘Small Town, America,’” McCommon said. “We’ve especially been amazed at the support we’ve received in West Virginia.”

The 257th Army Band does have some ties to the Mountain State. McCommon is a resident of Ravenswood, and the band’s commander, Chief Warrant Officer Sheila M. Klotz, is a West Virginia University alumna, having studied percussion there.

According the 257th Army Band’s website, the group traces its origins back to the Corcoran Cadets, first assembled in 1883, “the same militia that inspired John Philip Sousa to compose his march of the same name.” Among its more noted and historic performances are those at the burial of the Unknown Soldier in 1921 and state funerals of Presidents Warren Harding and John Kennedy. The band can also be seen each year leading the Fourth of July Parade in Washington, D. C.

“I think this is going to a wonderful thing,” Rader said of the free, family-oriented concert. She said, weather permitting, the concert will take place on Court Street with the stage at the North Street intersection.

McCommon said updates will be available on the band’s website ( and its Facebook page as they are made available. Updates will also be printed in Jackson Newspapers as they are made known.