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Brass band a family affair

Many family members of the band, front left to right: Kevin Pett, James Lower [plays for Kapiti also], Damien Lower, Chris Lower. Front left to right: Narissa Lower and sons Dylan Knight and Joshua Lower. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

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Five members of the Lower family marched and blew in time for about 1.5km up Queen St on Saturday for the Masterton Christmas parade.

The Lowers are members of the Masterton District Brass Band, playing Christmas carols at events throughout December.

Narissa Lower has been a band member for 23 years.

She said a big part of their practice sessions was to get the marching right and it was quite tricky.

“We practise marching up and down Park Ave behind the police station,” she said.

“You need to get your marching worked out before you get the instruments going.

“Blowing into an instrument and marching is hard.”

The oldest member of the band, which has been running for 146 years, is 80-year-old Norm Henderson and the youngest is Dylan Lower at age 12.

Narissa’s sons Joshua, 13, and Dylan marched for the first time this Christmas.

Their first parade was the Carterton parade.

“The brass instruments are heavy so they’re doing really well,” Lower said.

“Josh is playing a single tuber with a harness.

“It is also hard when you are hot, and the mouthpiece gets slippery.

“I have to stop playing and wipe it down, have a breather and get going again.”

The Featherston Christmas Parade was also on Saturday on Fitzherbert St.

One of the organisers and South Wairarapa councillor Brenda West said there were 30 to 40 floats in the Featherston parade and plenty of volunteers had helped her and Featherston Community Board member Claire Bleakley get it organised.

Martinborough’s Christmas parade is this Saturday at 5pm.

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