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Project of the Year

Central Park Bandshell


The Central Park Bandshell had been threatened with demolition twice in its 90-year history. In the 1960s, two local women led a fundraising campaign to make necessary repairs.  Forty years later, when deferred maintenance again had compromised the bandshell’s structural integrity, several concerned officials and local preservationists had


the structure listed on the National Register of Historic Places. This provided the catalyst for a community-wide preservation effort. Local fundraising and countless hours of donated labor stabilized the bandshell and restored it to its original splendor in just two months.


A re-dedication ceremony in July 2003 drew approximately 1,500—roughly 90% of the town’s population. During the past year, the bandshell has hosted numerous events, including a series of concerts performed by a newly-formed community band. Orion is located in Henry County, 15 miles southeast of Rock Island.


Click for a PDF article on the Orion bandshell from the December issue of Historic Illinois. Music under the Stars at Orion courtesy of Historic Illinois.









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