Marine Corps Celebration Saturday


This Saturday evening at the Mazatzal Casino, I have the distinct honor and pleasure to provide the musical entertainment for this year’s annual Marine Ball. This will be the fifth year I have been so honored.

The ball, a very dignified and elegant event, is hosted by the Marines’ Rim Country Detachment #928 and celebrates the 234th birthday of the United States Marine Corps.

You may know that the “Marines’ Hymn” is the official hymn of the U.S. Marine Corps. It is the oldest official song of the United States military. The song has an obscure origin — the words date from the 19th century, but no one knows the author.

The music is from the Gendarmes’ Duet from the opera Genevieve de Brabant, which debuted in Paris in 1859. The Marine Corps secured a copyright on the song on Aug. 19, 1919, but it is now in the public domain.

The “Marines’ Hymn” is typically sung at the position of “attention” as a gesture of respect. However, the third verse is also used as a “toast” during events important to the Corps, such as the Marine Corps birthday, promotions and retirements. Note the line “Here’s health to you and to our Corps.”

The Marine Corps Hymn begins with the verse “From the Halls of Montezuma ...” which refers to the 1847 Battle of Chapultepec, during the Mexican-American War, where a force of Marines stormed Chapultepec Castle, just west of Mexico City.

This week’s music trivia question is: Can you name the ending of the first verse of the Marine Corps Hymn, which begins, “From the halls of Montezuma ...”?

Is the ending: A) to the Great Wall of China, B) to the sun-baked Gobi Desert, C) to the shores of Tripoli, or D) to the banks of Green Valley Lake?

Be caller number three and have the right answer and you’ll win a one night stay in the Majestic Mountain Inn’s king luxury room. Wow, what a great way to treat your loved one (and yourself) to a romantic getaway!

Now, let’s see how we did with last week’s music trivia question, which was: Can you name the rock ’n’ roll girl group, first formed while still in high school, that recorded the 1962 hit, “The Frankenstein Twist?”

This trio went on to score seven more Billboard charted hits from 1962-64, including their top hits, “He’s A Rebel,” “Da Doo Ron Ron” and “Then He Kissed Me.”

Is this recording group A) The Ronettes, B) The Orlons, C) The Crystals or D) The Oxbowettes?

The correct answer was The Crystals.

Congratulations to this past week’s trivia winner, Joi Nelson, who won a $10 gift certificate to Scoop’s Ice Cream. (Is it never too cold outside to enjoy Scoop’s ice cream? Not for this ice cream addict, anyway!)

A little about Joi: She was born and raised in Macon, Ga. and grew up in Colorado. When she was 22 years old, to keep her best friend company, she traveled to the Valley, where her best friend met up with her boyfriend. Joi liked the area enough that she ended up staying in the Valley and made it her home.

Not long after moving to Arizona, Joi was introduced to Troy. Soon the two were off onto their first date at Castle Rock near Bartlett Lake, where they barbecued and fished.

Apparently, there was nothing “fishy” about Troy’s intentions and the two hit it off. They have recently celebrated their “china” wedding anniversary (their 20th) and have three wonderful children.

Joi and Troy moved to Payson 14 years ago when Joi heard that Frontier Elementary School was opening and might be in need of a cafeteria worker.

That didn’t work out for her, but she did end up getting hired for the same position at Payson Elementary School. For the last 11 years, Joi has served as the kitchen manager at PES. She also works in the evenings at Cousins Sub.

In her limited spare time, Joi enjoys gardening, listening to music and attending St. Philip’s Church. She has also recently begun learning the art of leatherwork.

Joi says she has an eclectic taste in music, but particularly enjoys the music of the 1970s. Her favorite artists are Pink Floyd, Johnny Cash and the Eagles.

Lastly, this Saturday, I will also be providing music at the annual Mogollon Health Alliance Health Fair at Payson High School, from 8 a.m. to noon. Please come by, say hello and check out the fair — just for the health of it!

DJ Craig

Phone: 468-1482

Web site:


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