As the director of the American Fork High School band that represented Utah in the 109th Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade this past Jan. 1, I would like to thank the many people and organizations that have supported this band. Marching in the parade was a thrill of a lifetime for me, the staff and the 264 students who represented Utah.
A thanks to the Deseret News and reporter Dennis Romboy and photographer Stuart Johnson, who accompanied us on the trip and provided excellent coverage of the event. Thanks to all the parents, staff and administration who were so willing to help with all the details of this undertaking, we could not have done it without you. A thanks to Ralph Laycock for providing us with such a wonderful musical arrangement. A special thanks to Doug Smith AutoPlex for buying us a new drumline outfit and to Savage industries for being our corporate sponsor.The American Fork Marching Band is just one of many outstanding bands in the state, and I hope parents and citizens in each school boundary will support their own program like we have enjoyed over the years in American Fork. There is a dark cloud hanging over music programs in Utah right now that threatens their very existence. The Utah State School Board has mandated that every student take a science class in the 9th grade. With the already limited electives in the 9th grade, this creates a real bottleneck that will eliminate many students' opportunity to participate in music classes. If you support music education, please contact a member of the State Board of Education and share with them your concerns.
It was a pleasure representing our state and sharing with the nation the "spirit of the Utah sesquicentennial." Thanks again Utah for supporting such a wonderful group as they marched for you in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade.
Director of bands
American Fork High School