Symphony to take place at Fort Riley

By The Mercury

Departing from its usual bucolic settings, Symphony in the Flint Hills announced yesterday that this year’s event will take place amid the historic limestone buildings of Fort Riley.

The eighth annual concert will be June 15 on Fort Riley’s Main Post, which includes the Artillery Parade Field and the Cavalry Parade Field.

Symphony in the Flint Hills each year brings the Kansas City Symphony to a stretch of pristine Kansas prairie for an outdoor performance at sunset. But this year, organizers decided to try a slightly different kind of venue.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and we’re thrilled to be partnering with Fort Riley to make it happen,” said Marty White, board chair for Symphony in the Flint Hills Inc. “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.”

Home to the Army’s oldest division, the Big Red One, Fort Riley was founded in 1853 and has prepared soldiers for action in every major U.S. conflict since World War I.

“Fort Riley is pleased to host the Symphony in the Flint Hills event in 2013,” said Col. William Clark, garrison commander at Fort Riley. “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.”

Symphony organizers said 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,” White said. “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.”

Tickets for this year’s symphony will go on sale at 10 a.m. on March 23. General admission tickets are $75 for adults and $43 for children under 12, and can be purchased online at 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.

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