by Karen Lunde for OLY ARTS
From the earliest tribal welcome songs to anti-war and protest anthems, music has given a powerful voice to messages of peace. The Olympia Peace Choir, a community chorus over 100 members strong, will carry that tradition on with its first-ever Peace Walk. Choir members have invited the community to stroll with them along the south shore of Capitol Lake to Marathon Park and back again, a 1.4-mile trip. Along the way, walkers will stop to sing for peace and social justice. Songs will include familiar folk tunes like “Blowin’ in the Wind” by Bob Dylan and “If I Had a Hammer” by Pete Seeger and Lee Hays, as well as traditional songs of peaceful protest like “Down by the Riverside.” All ages are welcome, and the event will happen rain or shine.
The Olympia Peace Choir is an inclusive group with no political or religious affiliations. Anyone who loves to sing, regardless of age or ability, is welcome to join each September when the performance season begins. Director and founder Kerri Lynn Nichols says, “We believe in quality through inclusion — combining the mastery of choral music with the artistry of expression.” Each year, the choir performs at venues around Olympia, including an annual concert at The Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in March and an always-spirited performance at Olympia Farmers Market in May.
What: Olympia Peace Choir Peace Walk
When: 2 p.m. Saturday, September 30 (begin gathering at 1:30 p.m.)
Where: Heritage Park,
330 Fifth Ave. SW, Olympia
How much: free