Traverse City Record-Eagle

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February 10, 2014

Choruses provide more than 50 years of love songs

TRAVERSE CITY — Cupid isn’t the only one paying Valentine’s Day visits to the romantically inclined.

The Grand Traverse Show Chorus of Sweet Adelines and quartets from the Cherry Capital Men’s Chorus have been sending out Singing Valentines to the community for almost 50 years.

Recipients are greeted with a long-stem rose, serenaded with two love songs, presented a personalized card from the sender and are photographed with the quartet. It’s a message the singers love to deliver.

Delivering valentines through song is one of George Tator’s favorite gigs of the year.

“Just the faces and the joy you bring to people when you go out delivering the Singing Valentines ... there’s nothing like it,” Tator said, while preparing for a recent rehearsal.

He loved this Valentine’s Day tradition so much the current president of the Cherry Capital Men’s Chorus also is chairman of the Singing Valentines chapter. Some of his favorite love songs include “Heart of My Heart” and “Let Me Call You Sweetheart.”

Tator and his fellow singers also enjoy stopping by local nursing homes to further spread the joy of Valentine’s Day.

The Grand Traverse Show Chorus of Sweet Adelines also deliver Singing Valentines with similar enthusiasm. They have organized three quartets for the occasion. Sandy Scarbrough joined the chorus last year after her children left home. It was an experience that proved to be immediately gratifying.

Friendships forged in the choir have helped her cope with “the shock of an empty nest.” She also considers the music deeply moving.

“I just love to hear those chords ring. It’s very different than singing with accompaniment,” she said. “I just love it.”

Scarbrough has become the coordinator of Singing Valentines, a move that kept her busy sending out postcards and scheduling rehearsals.

Hiring a quartet to perform a Singing Valentine is easy. Cherry Capital Men’s Chorus representatives can be reached by phone at 735-4087 or through their website, www.cherrycapitalchorus.org.

To make arrangements with Sweet Adelines, contact Scarbrough at 409-0999 or go to the group’s website, www.grandtraverseshowchorus.org.

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