Staples Area Men's Chorus pleasantly surprised by the acoustics in a machine shop

The Staples Area Men's Chorus held its first practice since March on August 6 at a machine shop located at the John Krause farm south of Staples. Over 30 members arrived and many precautions were taken such as bringing their own chairs and beverages, taking temperatures, and wearing masks.

by Trinity Gruenberg

This year marks the 50th season of singing together for the Staples Area Men's Chorus (SAMC). The members were excited to celebrate the anniversary when the pandemic halted their plans.

The chorus began in 1971 and still has a few of the original members. Back in March, just a week before the chorus was set to perform, the stay at home order was initiated. The members had not been able to gather to practice, until recently.

Steve Hoemberg has been directing the SAMC off and on since 2010 and has been singing in the chorus since high school. He was the high school choir director at the Staples school from 2001-2016. He explained the members have not been apart for more than their typical three-month summer hiatus.

The board met trying to figure out a plan so that the group could once again gather together.

“The pandemic is real and there is an at-risk population and many of our members fall into that category. And singing is one of the activities to be most cautious about,” said Hoemberg.

They tried a zoom meeting once and a few guys showed up.

“What if we decide to find a place to play by the rules?” questioned Hoemberg. . . .

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