It is believed that music, in an outdoor setting, creates physical activity, community, connection, and a sense of belonging.The Randolph Harmony Park project is a partnership between the Sunrise Rotary Club and the Randolph Noon Rotary Club, to install outdoor musical instruments as an enhancement to the town’s recreation field. An ensemble of five percussion instruments were installed and these real musical instruments, designed for placement in outdoor parks and recreation areas, combine sculptural beauty with musical integrity. Soothing tones are sophisticated and surprisingly delightful, making them fun and engaging for the novice or expert musician alike. Because there are no wrong notes, Harmony Park instruments ensure musical success and invite participation, bringing people back again and again.
These percussion instruments make musical expression available to anyone, regardless of physical or cognitive ability. Due to their simplicity, accessibility, and beautiful design, Harmony Park instruments create a unique experience that musically connects people in an outdoor environment with a sense of joyful community and belonging for both players and listeners. As people participate in co-creating music, one experiences a sense of spontaneity and joy. A focus and social engagement align without effort. The result of playing music with others fosters a deep listening, respect, and a sense of belonging that contributes to building community.
As the instruments are designed for outdoor venues, their durable quality construction minimizes maintenance costs. Harmony Parks does not use paint on any of its instruments. The overall percentage of maintenance rate for all instruments sold across a twenty-five year period is about 1%. The instruments have held up well to the harsh winters of Minneapolis, MN, and the austere dessert environment of Moab, UT. The results of studies of the Harmony Park installations in Minneapolis and Moab, report zero instances of vandalism or theft.
Across twenty-five years, Harmony Park instruments have been installed in hundreds of locations across North American and can be found on five continents. Three Harmony Park sites are located close to the Randolph area. These include Littleton, NH, Lyme, NH, and Brandon, VT. Each site can easily be visited. Members of the Sunrise Rotary Club have visited the Harmony Park sites in Moab, UT, Littleton, NH, and Lyme, NH. The Principal of the Brandon, VT elementary school, which has an ensemble of instruments on its playground, was eager to share how the instruments have brought the experience of performing music to young students who do not participate in a structured musical program, as well as those who do have musical training and are capable of creating more complex arrangements.
RiseVT partners on initiatives that align with at least one of the CDC 24 Strategies to Reduce Overweight & Obesity. Disc Gold at Hard’Ack most closely aligns with the three strategies: (16) to improve access to outdoor recreational facilities. The installation of musical instruments will be an attraction to bring people to the town’s recreation field for physical activity and community inter-action. The playing of musical instruments in an outdoor setting gets people involved and moving, in almost dance like rhythms, as they participate spontaneously with others in creating unique musical patterns.