Questions, Anyone?

Beach Boys

Q. Two friends ask, “Did the Beach Boys ever perform a concert in Alpena?”

A. Not as far as anyone remembers. Steve Wright of WATZ is one of many people who does not remember the Beach Boys ever giving a concert in Alpena. Steve saw the Beach Boys in Charlevoix in 1984 and again in Marquette in 1989, but never in Alpena.

Reader and Beach Boys fan Steve Westrope says that definitely the Beach Boys have never been to Alpena. Former Alpena buddy and Beach Boys fan Jeff Brasie agrees; they add that “a group imitating the Beach Boys, called the Excels, did indeed play a few times at the Alpena Armory around the mid-1960s.” Westrope remembers going to several Beach Boys concerts in Michigan, including Castle Farms in Petoskey, Ann Arbor and CMU.

According to the Internet, the Beach Boys gave concerts in many Michigan cities in the sixties and seventies, including: Ithaca and Harbor Springs in ’62-’63; Flint and Detroit in ’64; Detroit again in ’65; Lansing and Ann Arbor in ’66 (U of M recording of Surfin’ Safari and Shut Down); Detroit in ’68 and again in 1970; Big Rapids and CMU (Mount Pleasant campus) in ’72; Clarkston in ’74; Calvin College in Grand Rapids, and Lansing in ’75.

July 4 events of the past

Q. What are some historical Fourth of July events?

A. Radio commentator Garrison Keillor, in his daily radio program “A Writer’s Almanac”, gave the following information.

* “Today is Independence Day. On this day in 1776, the Second Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence, and the United States officially broke from the rule of England.”

* “Twenty-four years later, in 1804, the explorers Lewis and Clark had the first Fourth of July celebration west of the Mississippi. They were traveling through a part of the Midwest that is now Kansas. They stopped at the mouth of a creek on July 4th, and named it Independence Creek in honor of the day. To celebrate, they fired their cannon at sunset and distributed an extra ration of whiskey to the men.”

* “By a strange coincidence, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the second and third presidents of the United States, both died on this day in 1826, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson wrote the Declaration, and John Adams was its strongest supporter in the Continental Congress. They were political opponents after the Revolutionary War and ran against each other for president, but on the day that they died, John Adams’ last words were, “Thomas Jefferson still survives.” In fact, Jefferson had died a few hours before. “

Please send questions and comments to or to “Questions, Anyone?” The Alpena News, 130 Park Place, Alpena, MI 49707.