From Elmira Star-Gazette ca 1993
Twin Tiers Life
By Garth Wade
You gotta love those Roseville Rinky Dinks, because the band reminds us of the small-town values everybody years for.
Roseville is a town of 200 along Route 549 about 20 miles south of Elmira in Pennsylvania’s Tioga County. The Rinky Dinks is Roseville’s resident band.
Such a band! It gets invited to about 10 parades a year but plays in only two or three. Informal is the thing.
Anybody can join, but he or she must come to Roseville for at least one practice a year. There are some talented Rinky Dinks out there. Jack Wilcox and Dr. John Baynes, retired Mansfield University professors, tote tubas.
Dr. Belinda Thompson, a Pine City veterinarian, plays the glockenspiel.
Uniforms are bib overalls. The band has more than 50 extra uniforms, one that will no doubt fit you. Some players wear the same overalls for farm chores.
Whole families, like the talented Busias of Jobs Corners, are longtime Rinky Dinks.
Four generations of Rosevillian Annie Clark’s family are Rinky Dinks. Annie, 54, plays the trombone. Her 83 year-old mom, Louise Harris, plays the drum. Louise can walk, but Art Powlison pushes her in a wheelchair at parades so she can concentrate on her music.
Annie’s daughter, Jeannie Hocker, 36, and Jeannie’s daughters, Katie, 15, and Jessica, 12, are in the Lawn Chair Brigade. That’s the Rinky Dinks’ color guard. It consists of 10 to 20 people who open, close and tap lawn chairs to the beat of the music.
The Rinky Dinks’ parade rest is just that. Players all lie down. Big instruments are first placed in a lawn chair.
The band plays two songs, "When the Saints Go Marching In" and "The Challenger March". Except on Patriot’s Day (July 4), when the Rinky Dinks plays songs like "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" at the Roseville Methodist Church.
Seven Rinky Dinks are also Mansfield High School band members. They marched with the school band at Mansfield’s July 4 parade, then jumped into a van and changed into their bibs to become Rinky Dinks.
Rinky Dinks violate just about every marching band rule. Members talk in ranks and raid parade watchers’ food. The parade at Mainesburg was small this year, so the Rinky Dinks marched, then ran back to the beginning and marched again.
The band was born in 1966 after the Mansfield High School band stopped marching in Roseville’s Old Home Day parade, Rinky Dinks survived because of support in the form of loaned instruments from Mansfield University and the high school, says Annie Clark.
Now they have many of their own instruments. They need a set of cymbals, so if you know of anyone who has a pair lying around gathering dust….
The Rinky Dinks’ name was born two years after the band was formed, when Short Dunkleberger made an observation at a performance: "That wasn’t bad for a bunch of Rinky Dinks."
|H. Louise PALMER "Harris" is the founder of several generations of Roseville's musically talented women|