To the Editor:

It wasn't wrapped in paper or tied with a bow, but the Manchester Music Festival (MMF) certainly gave the people of the Northshire a wonderful gift this week. During the week of June 8, students were able to take a week of instrumental lessons for $25. Some tried instruments for the first time; others used the week to continue their studies. Members of the Young Artists of the MMF served as the program's instructors.

Watching the students, from 6-14, arriving with music cases in hand and smiles on their faces was evidence of the success of the program as was the participation of so many of the performers in Friday's concert hosted by the First Congregational Church.

Programs like this one not only bring people to Manchester but keep them here. We are grateful that our granddaughter had the chance to participate this year.

Patricia Johnston