The Charles Olson Memorial Scholarship Foundation has awarded scholarships to nineteen Newton High School instrumental music students. The scholarships are applied toward the cost of private music instruction by local music teachers. The 2017-18 recipients and their instruments are: Kate Szambecki, cello, Alejandra Martinez, violin, Adrianna Lettau , tuba, Ada Montano, viola, Zoe Stonehouse, french horn, Abby Chappell Deckert, cello, Josh Kennell, clarinet, Alexander Buffalo, clarinet, Olivia Oller, violin, Aubrie Nichols, violin, Zachary Kofoed, percussion, Elijah Redington, trombone, Eli Regier, saxophone, Joey Gile, saxophone, Daniel Buller, percussion, AJ Dugan, tenor saxophone,  Jakob Graber, cello, Jacob Phillips, percussion, Alfred Montano, trumpet.

Dr. Erwin and Gertrude Olson established the Charles Olson Memorial Scholarship Foundation for instrumental music lessons in memory of their son, Charles, who was killed in 1968 during a motorcycle accident. Charles Olson was also a devoted musician, playing piano, saxophone, and oboe, and expressed a wish for more students to have the opportunity to take private instrumental music lessons.

One of the major fundraising events for the foundation is the “Harmonies in Holiday Homes Tour,” featuring four homes decorated for the season with live holiday music. This year’s tour is  2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 10. All funds raised during the event go directly to the scholarship fund, in support of private instrumental music study. Tickets will be available for purchase at Prairie Harvest beginning in November.