07.2021 763-432-9713 www.mnschoolofmusic.com
THE MONTHLY MUSICIAN
GETTING BACK TO A BELOVED FAMILY TRADITION
BASEBALL ON THE FOURTH OF JULY
T he Fourth of July means Nehring family, it also means baseball. You may remember a while back when I talked about how the Fourth of July holidays in my youth were spent playing pickup games with the neighborhood kids during the day while we waited barbecues, fireworks, parades, and patriotism. And in the
planned trip to Truist Park to watch the Atlanta Braves take on the Florida Marlins feels all the more special. The new iteration of this family tradition started back in 2016 when my son and I took a road trip to Chicago and St. Louis, catching MLB games in both cities on the Fourth of
The other neat part of this family tradition is that I get to share it with more of my kids as they get older. Caleb has been with me since the start. Ava and my wife came along in 2017 for a California trip to see the Padres and Dodgers play. And this year, Lydia will be 5 years old — the traditional age in our household to go on an inaugural plane trip! I’m so excited to share this tradition with her and let Ava and Caleb show her the ropes. At this point, I’ve been to 21 of the 30 MLB stadiums. Truist Park will be No. 22. Not that I need an excuse to see the other eight, but having this as a family tradition will ensure I get to mark all the rest off my bucket list in due time. I hope you get to return to your own favorite Fourth traditions this month. We’ve all faced the same challenges in this last year, adapted well, and done our best to keep each other safe. Now it’s time to celebrate the good things in life … and play ball!
July weekend. As I got MnSOM up and running, I realized that the Fourth of July was the best time to take a family vacation. It’s one of the only slower periods we have
“Now that I have kids of my own, I feel so blessed to get to continue and add on to my family’s Fourth of July baseball tradition.”
for the parade and fireworks.
My love for the game came from my grandmother, who was a huge Minnesota Twins
fan and also my biggest fan. I’ll never forget her cheering me on as I took to the pitcher’s mound or the excitement I felt on those rare trips we got to take to watch the Twins play at the Metrodome. As a kid, most of my baseball memories are homegrown. Now that I have kids of my own, I feel so blessed to get to continue and add on to my family’s Fourth of July baseball tradition. Instead of pickup games in the yard, my kids and I are enjoying watching the pros play and traveling to a new stadium each year. Last year, this wasn’t possible, of course, so this year’s
at the school! Lots of our students and their families are out enjoying their own summer traditions around this time. But the timing feels significant, too. Baseball is called America’s pastime for a reason. And it’s always so cool to stand for the national anthem and watch them roll out a giant flag across the field during the holiday that we celebrate our nation’s independence. Sharing the love of the game (even with fans of the other team) and feeling the collective excitement inside a stadium is such a special and unifying thing.
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FUN FACTS ABOUT THE FOURTH OF JULY YOU CAN SHARE WITH YOUR KIDS
What do your kids know about the Fourth of July? Do they know it’s a day when you have a barbecue, spend time with friends and neighbors, and watch a fireworks show? These hallmarks of the holiday
Two future presidents signed the Declaration of Independence: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. They both died exactly 50 years later, on July 4, 1826. This fact is an interesting coincidence sure to fascinate both kids and adults. It’s also a great way to introduce kids to some of the Founding Fathers and share how they helped shape the United States today. In 1776, the year the United States was founded, only 2.5 million people lived here. Today, the U.S. population is 331 million. Lots of people have been born in the United States since it was founded, and millions more came here from other places, hoping to find a better life. Many succeeded, too. Many people want to call this country home! On the Fourth of July, around 155 million hot dogs are eaten in the United States. Okay, so this fact might not have anything to do with American history, but it’s still pretty funny! If anything, the fact that we have so many hot dogs to eat on that day is evidence of the prosperity so many people enjoy in the United States of America.
certainly do make it fun and memorable, but they don’t really exemplify why we celebrate the Fourth of July, the anniversary of when the United States declared its independence from Britain. So, along with the sparklers and hot dogs, here are a few fun facts about Independence Day you can share with your kids to help them understand the significance of the holiday. The Fourth of July marks our country’s independence because it’s when the Continental Congress ratified the Declaration of Independence. This fact might seem like a no-brainer, but it contextualizes the holiday for kids. It’s a great jumping-off point to talk about why the United States wanted to be its own country, what the Continental Congress was, what the Declaration of Independence said, and what it means to “ratify” something.
GUITAR TEACHER TURNED OFFICE MANAGER MEET JOHN HODGES!
We’re happy to introduce John Hodges as MnSOM’s office manager! John joined the MnSOM family last year as a guitar teacher after finishing his seminary degree at Yale and relocating from the East Coast with his wife, Hopewell, who is doing a Ph.D. program at the University of Minnesota. John is a great musician and teacher, but he also brings a diverse skill set to his position at MnSOM.
where he grew up to his time at Yale. It even went across the pond with him when he studied for a stint at Oxford University. Though his travels and involvement in the church community, John has had the opportunity to play with lots of talented musicians and practice new genres like gospel and neo-soul. When he moved to Minnesota last year, he began at MnSOM as a part-time teacher but happily jumped on the opportunity when Eric recruited him to full-time office staff. “I really like what the Nehrin family has built with his school. There is a culture of mutual encouragement and people are excited about learning and the students,” John said. He’s looking forward to helping Eric continue to build on the school’s excellent reputation and expand the musical offerings to serve even more students. As the office manager, John will be the liaison between staff and instructors, making sure that everyone’s schedules run smoothly. He’ll also be helping Eric plan and execute events and recitals, which are in high demand after a year spent largely at home. When it comes to logistics, John is a pro. He got married and moved across the country during a pandemic year. He’s excited to put down roots here and says he and his wife love exploring the city and state they now call home.
John’s academic background is in Biblical studies and divinity, but music has always been an important part of his life thanks to his parents. “My mom is quite musical. She sings and learned guitar with me when I first took lessons in elementary school,” he said. “My dad can’t really even clap on beat,” John jokes, “but he was also a huge musical influence and is responsible for a lot of musical taste,” including taking him to see his first concert — Bob Dylan — when John was 7. The guitar lessons John did with his mom as a kid stuck. He’s continued to play guitar and write songs, and that hobby has traveled with him across the country from Montana
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INTRODUCING MUSIC FUNTIME MUSIC CLASSES FOR THE YOUNGEST MEMBERS OF YOUR FAMILY
Christabel E. Noah M. Soloman M. Vihas C. Lyla K.
Tessa K. Sean D. Liam W.
Music lessons are highly individual, but they’re also often a family affair. We’ve taught so many siblings over the years, and many have asked about lessons for the youngest members of their families. Previously we’ve offered lessons for kids as young as 5, but that’s all changing this September when we roll out our Music FunTime program. WHAT IS THIS AWESOME NEW PROGRAM FOR YOUNGER KIDS? Kids as young as 18 months can enroll in this nationally recognized comprehensive music program. Classes are held once a week for 30 minutes in a small group setting. For your kids, this half hour will whiz by with fun crafts and music-based activities. These classes are appropriate for kids aged 18 months to 7 years. This program is also a great, affordable option for families who are enrolling multiple children in lessons at MnSOM. WHAT WILL MY KIDS LEARN? The Music FunTime curriculum was developed with kids’ unique learning abilities in mind. Just as they learn color, letters, numbers, and shapes, your kids can learn musical notes and symbols. Trained instructors will teach these concepts in a fun environment with colorful tools, crafts, and, of course, hands-on experience playing rhythm and other instruments. They’ll get a peek behind the curtain of what their siblings are doing during their lessons, and this class will set them up well to move on to individual lessons as they get older. ARE THERE BENEFITS TO LEARNING MUSIC THIS YOUNG? Here at MnSOM, we talk a lot about the lifelong benefits of learning to play an instrument. Music FunTime is a great way to bring those benefits to more of your family members. In addition to being a fun social activity for kids, these classes are a great precursor to individual instrument music lessons later in life and studies have shown that learning music at a young age is not only possible but it also helps kids to develop confidence and primes them to grasp math and science concepts as they develop.
Landon M. Thomas G. Austin A. Duncan M.
Why did the student eat her homework? Because her teacher said it was a piece of cake. Charlie Fehrenbacher
Do you consider yourself a budding comedian? Are you known for your sense of humor? Now Introducing CALEB’S COMEDY CLUB We will select a winner each month to have their joke printed in our newsletter! Winners will receive a Caleb’s Comedy Club T-shirt and sticker. For your chance to be featured in our monthly newsletter, send us your funniest kid-friendly joke to email@example.com.
To learn more, just ask at your next lesson or visit MusicFunTime.org.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE
Getting Back to a Beloved Family Tradition This Fourth of July
Fourth of July Fun Facts to Share With the Kids Meet Our New Office Manager John Hodges
Welcome New Students Learn About Our New Music Classes for Young Kids
The Paddleboard Craze Is Here to Stay
THE STAND-UP PADDLEBOARD CRAZE THAT NEVER WENT AWAY
Outdoor and exercise crazes come and go almost as fast as hairstyles and popular app games do. But every once in a while, a trend comes along that remains popular — think karate,
a life preserver, and of course, a place to go! It’s a new way to see the water, which only boosted its popularity. Even veteran water
sports enthusiasts weren’t used to standing on the water instead of sitting in a boat! But according to the industry’s own numbers, that popularity never died down. As it turns out,
which spiked in the ‘60s and again in the ’80s, and it can still be found in almost every American city to this day. Back in 2013, one such trend arose: the stand- up paddleboard, or SUP for short.
The act of standing on a floating piece of wood in a surfboard shape and paddling (or poling) yourself along likely goes back thousands of years, but the SUP craze can be traced back to one man — and he’s not even in his 60s yet! That man is famous surfer Laird Hamilton, a household name in a sport that doesn’t usually generate them. And Laird, along with the Waikiki Beachboys, showed the world a new way to hit the water in the first decade of the 21st century.
SUP is a good way to get around, and a lot of folks need that. Many cities, such as San Antonio, feature “paddling trails” that let SUP practitioners see the city in a new way or even commute via their board. How cool is that? If you’re looking for a new hobby this summer, it’s easy to rent a stand-up paddleboard and learn the basics. Take a class, head out into the water, and give it a shot. Who knows, you might be one of the thousands of Americans to discover a lifelong passion!
Unlike other crazes, the gear was simple and the activity beginner-friendly. To start, you only need a paddle, a board,
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