After a long weekend, we awoke and met at Zion Mennonite Church to depart for Canby High School. Once there, we warmed up and listened to the Concert Choir, a mixed chorus of about 120 Seniors and Juniors. The Canby choir sang a Renaissance piece, a Russian Romantic piece, and My Soul is Anchored in the Lord (a spiritual). As a former member of the Canby Concert Choir, it made me nostalgic for my huge high school choir, with all its power. After their three songs, it was our turn. We took the stage and performed several pieces, followed by two small ensembles: the Rooftop Quartet and the Pirate Band. The Canby students absolutely loved the Rooftop Quartet, with girls fainting left and right. After performing for each other we joined forces to sing Franz Biebl’s Ave Maria. You could see the smiles on everyone’s faces, especially Brooks Gingerich, director at Canby High School and Goshen College Alumnus (’08), as he led his two alma maters in song.
As the bell rang for lunch, the pizza delivery guy showed up, allowing us to break for some food. However, I ran to the local Thai restaurant to grab myself some Pad Thai, a delicacy we are lacking in Goshen (except at Scott Hochstetler’s house!). Following lunch were the Canby Women’s and Men’s choirs, both of whom are mostly freshman choirs who were impressively good for their age. The Women’s Choir sang Parting Glass, a traditional Scottish song, together with us. The Rooftop Quartet performed again sparking much swooning from the freshman girls. After some shenanigans, a beatboxing competition, and some lovely banter, the Canby men came in to join us. We spent all of our time with them sight reading different songs, including I Bind My Heart This Tide arranged by their director, Brooks Gingerich. It was very touching to sing this Mennonite hymn with the Canby High men.
Our last stop of the day was at Salem Mennonite Church, where we explored the area and feasted on Taco Salad version 3.0. Many of us went to Goodwill and bought matching American-themed swim trunks to wear and visited a local Hispanic produce market for some juice and fruit. Later that night we performed our set for the last time that day. It was a fun and fulfilling performance even after a long day of singing. I personally felt as if there was a strong connection to out text, resulting in a spiritually uplifting concert. After meeting for refreshments in the lobby, we were delivered to our host families to get some well-deserved rest before our upcoming day of hiking.