The Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge, Iowa

The Karl King Band is the municipal band for Fort Dodge, Iowa. This ensemble has historically provided a summer concert series in the Karl King Bandshell in beautiful Oleson Park and an indoor concert series held in the auditorium of Iowa Central Community College.   These concerts are free to all, and are provided as a service by the City of Fort Dodge. Jerrold P. Jimmerson is the Director of the King Band, and Dr. David Klee serves as the band's Assistant Conductor.  Learn more about the Band and visit the online archive of photos related to the history of the Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge, Iowa.

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COMING this Winter

      The Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge, IA is getting set to begin their 2019 winter season.  Three concert dates have been scheduled on Sunday, February 17; Sunday, March 17; and Sunday, April 7.   All concerts begin at 3:30 p.m., and are held in Decker Auditorium on the Iowa Central Community College campus in Fort Dodge.   There is no admission charge, with these concerts being provided by the City of Fort Dodge.

Jerrold P. Jimmerson is currently in his 16th season as Conductor of the band after a 43 year playing career, 11 of which were under the baton of Karl L. King.   Dr. David Klee currently serves as the Assistant Conductor and solo flautist of the band. 

     Karl King was born on February 21, 1891 in Paintersville, Ohio.   After his childhood in Ohio, he left at the age of 19 and traveled for 9 years with several different circuses, conducted several of their bands, and reached the pinnacle of success as conductor of the famous Barnum and Bailey Circus Band during the 1917 and 1918 seasons. 

He returned to his hometown of Canton, Ohio after his trouping days were done in November of 1918 to settle down with his wife, Ruth, and to direct the local G.A.R. Band there.  This February 17th concert will be the Band’s annual tribute to former Conductor Karl L. King in honor of his birthday.   A special afternoon of band music is being planned to include some of King’s best-known and most popular compositions, along with some of his music that was published 100 years ago in 1919. 

      The March 17 concert will be the Band’s annual Irish Concert to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.   This concert dates back to the early days of the Band under Mr. King’s direction.   A wide variety of Irish music is being planned, and will include an audience sing-along and everyone’s favorite Irish tune, “McNamara’s Band”. 

     The April 7 concert has become two-fold in nature in recent years.  It is the Band’s annual Scholarship Concert, where talented high school seniors and college freshmen audition for three scholarships that the Band annually administers.  In addition, this concert will tie into the annual cultural emphasis for Iowa Central Community College.  This year’s featured country is Viet Nam, and several musical selections are being planned to showcase this region and the Viet Nam War era. 

The Municipal Band will then perform at the traditional Memorial Day ceremonies in Fort Dodge on Monday, May 27, before beginning a series of 8 summer concerts every Sunday evening from June 9 through July 28 in the Karl L. King Band Shell in Oleson Park.

2018 Summer Season photos
 June 10 performance   -   June 17 performance   -   June 24 performance   -   July 15 performance  - Season Finale


     The nationally-known Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge Ia, was invited to join the 100th anniversary celebration of the Clay County Fair in Spencer on September 17 last year.  Karl L. King and the Fort Dodge Municipal Band were regular fixtures at that fair each year, beginning in 1922 and continuing to the close of the 1959 season.  This photo shows Karl King and his band in front of their tent camp at the 1928 Clay County Fair.

(You may click image to see the page giving identities of those pictured.)
Karl King is in the center of the photo, between the two sousaphone players.

The King Band last appeared at the Fair in Spencer for the 75th anniversary in 1992.

The Karl King Band performed in the Grandstand that evening, beginning with a pre-concert at 6:30 pm before the main celebration starts at 7:00 pm.  Check the King Band Facebook page for more.

The first concert of the 2017 Winter season of the
Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge was held Sunday afternoon, February 19.

The last Sunday Program of the 2017 Summer season was held July 30.

Click to see the King Band's appearance at the 2015 IBA State Conference.

Jimmerson took Dr. Golemo's place on week in 2015, conducting the Ames Municipal Band.

Open House celebrated 150 years held in the Fort Dodge Public Library Meeting Room.

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     Several years ago, CIRCUS POSTERS were made into U.S. postage stamps.


The King Band performed for the 2017 Preserve Iowa Summit.   Learn more ...

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The Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge is seen during a practice session
before taking the stage.
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The 2014, 2015 and 2016 Winter and Summer Concert Series
May be viewed in our Concert Archive

View a video of the band performing Karl King's march, Bon Voyage. (60 MB mpg format)

View photos of the bandshell during the renovation process.

View concert photos from previous seasons
Concert Archive

Dr. Mike Golemo, several times guest conductor at the summer concerts

Fort Dodge's newest monument was dedicated in a ceremony held October 22, 2006.  The life-size monument to famed band composer and director, Karl L. King, was placed in the Karl L. King Park in downtown Fort Dodge and was first seen by the public following an open house of the Karl King Archives. 

The dedication ceremony included a program by the Karl L. King Municipal Band and the introduction of special guests and an address by former Fort Dodge mayor, Judge Albert Habhab.  - program photos  -  2006 Open House

Statue proposed - Statue in progress - Statue mounting process - Dedication speakers - Dedication program

Deann Haden-Luke's original musical that uses
Karl King music has been published! 

View Cardiff information on the Heuer Publishing website.

Cardiff AnnouncementCardiff 2006 Premiere

What's New with the Band?

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The Karl King Band was the featured performing ensemble for the 2006 Summer Meet of Windjammers, Unlimited.   - photos -

2016 Scholarship Concert    2017 Scholarship Concert

Click for more scholarship auditioners

The 2018 Karl King Scholarship
winner was
Nic Englin of Rockwell City,
who performed Beautiful Colorado on his Euphonium.

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The Karl King Band performed in the Iowa State
Capitol to promote a postage stamp in his honor.

Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen 
interviewed Oley about Karl King.
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(click to enlarge)

Dr. Timothy Rhea, director of bands at Texas A & M University
in College Station, was the special guest conductor for the 2012 June 24 concert.

Walking Frog excerpt 1 - Walking Frog excerpt 2

This page is available as

the Karl King Page Concert Season Archive Online Photo Archive

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