Meredith Yeomans

Plano Orchestra Flooded With Donations After Storm Damage

About 40 instruments were destroyed

The City of Plano says about $250,000 worth of storm damage was caused at Oak Point Park, which was packed with equipment for the city's annual balloon festival.

Lost in the floodwater in late September were dozens of musical instruments owned by the Plano Symphony Orchestra.

Erin Stewart, president of the board of directors, said about 40 instruments were destroyed. She said the instruments were in waterproof bins, but the bins floated off when floodwater rose. Twelve instruments were recovered and about 25, mostly string instruments, were lost. Stewart said a trombone turned up more than a mile downstream.

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"To see these instruments in the mud and know that they won't be able to be used anymore, that essentially they've gone from something that had a great purpose to being more or less trash is really sad," she said.

What makes it even worse, Stewart said, the instruments were part of a public outreach program called the "Petting Zoo," a place kids could touch, hear and play all types of instruments.

"My own children have been able to benefit from the instruments in the Petting Zoo, they all take violin lessons as a result of it," she said.

The balloon festival -- canceled because of flooding -- was the first of many events the Petting Zoo was signed up for in the coming months.

Now, the orchestra needs to drum up donations -- fast.

Organizers are asking people to check their attics and garages for old instruments they don't use anymore. They are especially in need of smaller-sized violins, cellos and violas. To donate an instrument, contact the Plano Symphony Orchestra.

As of Oct. 4, North Texans have donated about $1,300 to the symphony and 14 instruments to the orchestra. Those include violins, clarinets, flutes, cellos and more.

Phone: 972-473-7262
Address: 5236 Tennyson Parkway, Suite 200, Plano, TX 75024
Facebook: Plano Symphony Orchestra

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