SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Saturday in the Park has dozens of folks returning annually to make the festival possible. The festival has been a pivotal part of Phyl Claeys’ life.

“Well, I’ve been to everyone so far but, I don’t know, 4, 5 years into it. Dave reached out and said that they could use some help with the parking situation,” Phyl Claeys said.

Claeys has been part of the transportation committee for more than two decades

“We make sure that the busses are running, you know, the people up here as well. And the people who have passes can get in and park in various areas,” Claeys said.

One day, the festival founder proposed an idea to Claeys.

“The folk that was doing the Star Spangled Banner to open this show moved, and so Dave asked me if I wanted to do it. It’s just a really cool way to start this event,” Claeys said.

He has sung the national anthem to open Saturday in the Park for the last two decades.

“Well I’ve been a singer my whole life. This just seemed like such a neat thing to be able to do, I mean sing the Star Spangled Banner at a Rock concert, you know, outdoors, you know, in Sioux City,” Claeys said.

With that experience, Claeys was able to enjoy the festival with some notable acts.

“Some just stop and look and think, oh my god, this is amazing. And they share that with us, I mean they really, like Santana. Santana loved being here,” Claeys said.

Claeys will sing the star-spangled banner to kick off Saturday in the Park at the Bandshell. In the next ‘Stories from the Park’, we’ll hear from the head of an adjacent event, Arts Alley.