What would a bicentennial be without a special song?
After all, Frank E. Macke wrote the "Belleville Homecoming March" for the city's centennial.
So to make the bicentennial just as special, Becky Kern Taylor sat down and wrote her own song about Belleville, "My Home Town."
She had the song recorded with Forrest Bevineau singing. Bevineau, who sings at a lot of Belleville public events, is known as the singing bailiff.
Kern Taylor also wrote "I Love Belleville Schools," and had it recorded on the same CD with Caroline Gagen, a sixth-grader from Freeburg, singing.
Both songs will be performed June 7 at the bicentennial street fair. There also will be performances June 30 in a concert in front of the St. Clair County Building.
Kern Taylor said writing music is just something she does.
"I have a lot of fun with it," she said. "It's an expensive hobby recording songs. It's meant to honor the city. It's probably not gonna hit the charts. But I already had the music so I added the lyrics."
"My Home Town," has a country western swing with lyrics that honor some local celebrities including astronaut Sandy Magnus, golfer Bob Goalby and News-Democrat cartoonist Glenn McCoy. It also includes movie star Buddy Ebsen.
"There's a lot of things to see in my hometown," the song says.
Those things include quaint shops, lots of restaurants and annual events like Art on the Square, the Downtown Chili Cookoff and Octoberfest.
Kern Taylor also works into the song the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows and its annual Way of Lights and another famous person who visited town.
"I bet you didn't know it, but Abe Lincoln was here," another chorus says.
She said she also is working on verses to the music of the Belleville Homecoming March, which was written in 1914.
"That has 11 verses," she said. "We'll record that when I'm done."
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