Feedback: Walmart Bars Volunteer From Playing Trumpet
Robert Gibbs says the Christmas carols he was playing on his trumpet at the Potsdam Walmart is something he has done for years as a volunteer Salvation Army bell ringer at other Walmart locations without a problem.
But this year, when he started playing, he was told by management to stop.
"Frankly, I was a little bit perturbed. I've done this for a lot of years and I'm a professional," said Gibbs.
For the last 15 years, the 81 year old retired SUNY Potsdam Crane School of Music professor says he has helped fill numerous Salvation Army red kettles by playing songs of the season on his trumpet.
He says there are no safety issues involved with the instrument or music he plays.
While ringing a bell, which is a musical instrument of sorts, is allowed, Gibbs says he can't understand why Walmart is banning his trumpet playing as part of its nationwide store policy.
"This is not harmful to their business in any way," he said.
Neither Walmart nor Salvation Army officials returned our phone calls for comment on this latest incident banning Gibbs from his trumpet playing while standing as a bell ringer.
Last week Walmart's decision prohibiting Carl Zender from using his CD player to sing and dance at the Massena store drew a storm of controversy.
Gibbs says the corporate giant needs to loosen up its policy or at the very least show some holiday spirit.
And just like Carl Zender was forced to do, Robert Gibbs also plans to relocate his trumpet playing to another location - somewhere, he says, where he is welcome.