More than 200 people clapped and sang along to some their favorite songs in Neligh's Riverside Park on Friday night as the U.S. Air Force Heartland of America Band entertained the crowd with a free concert.
Eleven members of the band from Offutt Air Force Base played for people of all ages as they performed a mix of tunes from the Vietnam War-era ("Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree," "Me & Bobby McGee," "Joy to the World") to today's hits ("Uptown Funk" and "Lips Are Movin"). And, of course, they added in several patriotic songs as well.
Near the end of the show, each branch of the military was called out. Veterans from those branches were asked to stand and be recognized for their service.
The Heartland of America Band is a group of Air Force professional musicians whose backgrounds include advanced degrees in music performance and whose broad mastery of musical styles range from classic to contemporary, jazz to country, and pop to rock. Its various component ensembles perform more than 150 concerts annually, performing extensively throughout Nebraska and surrounding states.
Band members performing in front of the grand stand said they hailed from California to Pennsylvania, and several states in between.