We take a break today from our regularly scheduled BBQ programming to celebrate another delight for the senses, specifically the sweet strains of the Santa Maria Philharmonic Society.

It’s no secret that, amid the challenges of a rough economy, the Santa Maria Philharmonic Society was recently faced with the possibility of shutting down. Well, we are happy to report that the society has rallied and will be offering a suite of tantalizing performances this winter and into 2012.

The excitement begins with a November 19 performance by Café Musique at Grace Baptist Church.  Hailing from the Central Coast of California, this group presents a musical collage of waltz, tango, gypsy, and folk.  Then, on December 2 at First United Methodist Church, Maestro John Farrer and the Santa Maria Philharmonic Orchestra will present a Holiday Fantasy Concert. Additional performances are scheduled for February, April and May.

In addition to providing the Santa Maria Valley with a diverse range of concerts, the society reaches out to more than 5,000 elementary school students each year, thus playing a vital cultural role in the community. “We are committed to keeping the classical music art form alive in the Santa Maria Valley,” says Executive Director George J. Majoue.

It’s yet another reminder that good taste in the Santa Maria Valley isn’t limited to barbecue, wine and strawberries! Indeed, the valley abounds with concerts, theater, museums and other cultural attractions that await your exploration.