The Cody Choraliers will be serenading unsuspecting loved ones in the Leavenworth area on Valentine’s Day. The tradition started 40 years ago when a local florist asked the Choraliers if they would deliver roses with a song for his customers. The deliveries were such a hit for both the recipients and the quartet that the Cody Choraliers kept on purchasing roses from local florists and delivering singing Valentines with a rose and a card. It’s a practice they still do today.
The Cody Choraliers were started by several local singers who enjoyed performances by barbershop music singers from Kansas City, Missouri, and St. Joseph, Missouri. They formed the Leavenworth chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society in 1969 and named themselves the Cody Choraliers in honor of Buffalo Bill Cody who grew up in the Leavenworth area.
The Cody Choraliers are made up of local businessmen, federal employees, retired military, teachers, craftsmen, students and contractors who share the joy of singing in the barbershop style.
When asked if they have any good stories about this Valentine’s Day tradition, Bill Krondak responded with a resounding “Yes, we do!”
The stories include befriending barking dogs to allow the quartet to get to a person’s front door and serenading a man at work to the amusement of his laughing co-workers. They even arrived at one couple’s house when the wife was berating her husband for forgetting Valentine’s Day. He turned the evening around with a romantic surprise.
Bill’s favorite story happened a couple of years ago when they delivered a rose to a woman in the hospital awaiting a heart transplant. They sang “Heart of My Heart” and had her laughing in her hospital bed. The woman’s transplant was a success and she still stays in touch with the quartet.
The quartet delivers a rose and a card then sings two songs, “Heart of My Heart” and “Let Me Call You Sweetheart.”
They will take requests if they know the song. For more information, contact a member of the Cody Choraliers or call 913-651-7464.
Mike Nickells writes about music in the Leavenworth area. To contact him, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org