Tubas are standouts in marching bands, and usually in the rear of orchestras---but as a solo instrument? Come see for yourself at 'Tuba Christmas', a gathering that's become a national holiday tradition.
The Syracuse area's version is in Shoppingtown (DeWitt) on Saturday afternoon (3pm concert, but if you want to play, 12:30pm registration and 1:30 rehearsal in the old library space). Michael Coldren will be conducting--he's a tuba player who teaches at SU's music school and also plays in Symphony Syracuse. He expects over 120 players to perform.
Rome is also doing Tuba Christmas, at Rome's Capitol Theatre, Monday at 7pm.
Both events are free, and carry on a tradition started in 1974 at the Rockefeller Center Skating Rink in Manhattan.