Congratulations to Ms. Marisa Weinstein, Director of Bands, Warsaw Middle School, Pittsfield, ME, the 2017 recipient of the George N. Parks Leadership in Music Education award. Ms. Weinstein received the award during the opening finals ceremonies at the 2017 Grand National Championships, presented by Yamaha on November 11.
Developed by NAfME, the National Association for Music Education and Music for All, the award is named for George N. Parks (1953–2010), director of the University of Massachusetts Minuteman Marching Band at the University of Massachusetts Amherst from 1977 until his death, and honors an exemplary music educator who embodies the characteristics and leadership that Mr. Parks personified.
Marisa Weinstein began teaching at Warsaw Middle School in Pittsfield, Maine nearly three decades ago, and in that time, she has had an immeasurable impact on the students, parents, and community in Pittsfield. In addition to teaching three concert bands, two jazz bands, two general music classes, and two choruses, Ms. Weinstein also facilitates musical performances at several community events throughout the year.
A native of Merritt Island, Florida, Ms. Weinstein began her career at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where she received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Music Education. While at UMass, she studied conducting with Malcom W. Rowell and percussion with Dr. Peter Tanner. She served ten years as the Associate Conductor for the Casco Bay Wind Symphony in Portland, ME (1990-2000), and she continues to actively perform, evaluate, and guest conduct throughout the New England area today.
Beyond the classroom, Ms. Weinstein demonstrates her commitment to her school and community in a variety of ways. She has coached multiple middle school sports teams for the last 15 years, she has facilitated student performances at several parades and festivals in Pittsfield, and she volunteers to DJ once a month at every Warsaw Middle School dance throughout the school year. Sharon Littlefield, the principal of Warsaw Middle School, said of Ms. Weinstein: “I would like to say that this ‘music family feeling’ she creates is due to the time she spends instructing her students as musicians, but as you can see her connections extend far beyond her program.”
Ms. Weinstein is an active member of the Maine Music Educators Association, and she has served four terms as the District chairperson. She was presented with the Association’s “Educator of the Year” award in 2013, demonstrating the visibility of her commitment to her students and her community. Both former and current students of Weinstein’s said that not only does she connect with students on a personal level, but she also holds them to high standards of excellence. When asked about how she defines success in her programs, Ms. Weinstein emphasized the importance of taking risks and standing up for what you believe in: “When students are willing to risk failure, they learn more about themselves and develop a greater overall appreciation of and for each other.”
2016 Thom Hannum
Associate Director, Minutemen Marching Band, the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, MA
2015 Patrick M. Erwin
Director of Bands at Hillgrove High School in Powder Springs, GA
2014 Cynthia Napierkowski
Director of Bands at Salem High School in Salem, MA
2013 Dr. Barry Shepherd
Superintendent of Cabarrus County Schools, NC
2012 Daniel Kirk
Blue Valley West, KS
2011 Dr. Peter Boonshaft
The Patrick John Hughes Parent Booster Award recognizes the extraordinary commitment, dedication, support, and sacrifice of music parents and boosters across the nation by shining a spotlight on a recipient who exemplifies these qualities.
The award is named in honor of Patrick John Hughes, the father of Patrick Henry Hughes. Patrick Henry is a remarkable young man who, despite physical challenges that would seem overwhelming to many, has excelled as a musician and student, singing and playing piano and trumpet with the Louisville Marching and Pep Bands, with the help of his father, who tirelessly maneuvers his son’s wheelchair through the formations with the other 220+ members of the Cardinal Marching Band.
On Friday night during the Grand National Championships, the 2017 Patrick John Hughes Parent Booster award was awarded to Greg Hooper of McEachern, Georgia.
Successful band programs are made of driven students, passionate teachers, and committed parents and boosters (with those adjectives applying to all). Since 2008, the Patrick John Hughes Parent/Booster Award annually honors a parent, booster, or volunteer who selflessly gives their support and dedication to a band program. The recipients of this award come from different backgrounds, yet are revered as heroes by their programs and make a commitment to keeping the students a priority. That’s 2017 Parent/Booster recipient Greg Hooper’s ideology: “the kids come first.”
A former band member of McEachern High School in Powder Springs, Georgia, Greg has been an active member of the McEachern High School Band Booster Club since 1993 when his first child became a member of the band. As all four of his children were active members of the band, Greg served in a variety of positions such as Co-President and Co-Vice President for the McEachern Band Parent Association and chairing different committees including Equipment, Props, Field Crew/Truck Crew, and Fundraising. He was also McEachern’s trip organizer, heading a trip for the Lord Mayor’s Parade in London. Even long after his children graduated from the band program, he continues to serve as a Props Engineer as he builds and designs the vision of each show. For the past 22 years, Mr. Hooper has served the Cobb County School District as head of the staging crew for the Cobb County High School and Middle School Band and Orchestra Large Group Performance Evaluation. He is also a part of logistical services for the Cobb County Marching Band Exhibition.
Jeff Harper, former Associate Director of Bands at McEachern, says Greg is “thoughtful, helpful, and remarkably selfless with his time.” He commends Greg’s passion for music advocacy and unwavering support for the arts in the Cobb Country School District. Most recently Greg has spent time volunteering as part of the stage crew for Music for All’s Affiliate Southeastern Regional Concert Festival at Georgia State University. He also was an attendee of Music for All’s Summer Symposium Parent Booster Institute, while his daughter attended the Summer Symposium as a student.
Highly regarded in his community and band family, Greg is a strong and inspiring figure to everyone around him. He truly personifies Music for All’s mission “to create, provide, and expand positively life-changing experiences through music for all” through his selfless actions of ensuring that students are provided the best musical experiences. To Mr. Greg Hooper, thank you for your dedication to the students.
Mr. Hooper pictured with past Parent/Booster Award Winners
We hope that everyone will be joining us on Thanksgiving day by watching the 2017 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade! We cannot wait to watch and support all of the amazing marching bands that will be featured throughout the parade. We are especially excited this year to say that all of the high school bands that will be marching in the parade are in the Bands of America family! Congratulations to all of you on being selected for the 91st Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!
So make sure you tune in and join us in supporting these incredible ensembles as they perform for nearly 50 million television viewers nationwide! We know they will make us proud! The parade steps off at 9:00 AM on Thursday, November 23rd. You can watch the parade live on NBC. The telecast will air from 9:00 AM to 12 Noon in all time zones.
Below is a list of all of the marching bands you will see in the parade!
Colony High School Marching Band
Davis High School Marching Band
Nation Ford High School Marching Band
Fort Mill, South Carolina
Ohio University Marching 110
Prairie View A&M University Marching Storm
Prairie View, Texas
Rockford High School Marching Band
Rosemount High School Marching Band
Trumbull High School Golden Eagle Marching Band
The United States Air Force Band
West Harrison High School Marching Band
Macy's Great American Marching Band
NYPD Marching Band
For great Macy's coverage (including a list of what these bands will be performing!) visit our friends at Marching.com.
For more information about the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade visit www.macys.com/parade.
6:00 AM - Gates Open
6:30 AM – Adair County H.S., KY
6:45 AM – Jenison H.S., MI
7:00 AM – DeSoto Central H.S., MS
7:15 AM – Central Hardin H.S., KY
7:30 AM – Norton H.S., OH
7:45 AM – Beechwood H.S., KY
8:00 AM – Archbishop Alter H.S., OH
8:15 AM – Franklin H.S., TN
8:30 AM – Prosper H.S., TX
8:45 AM – James F. Byrnes H.S., SC
9:00 AM – Bassett H.S., VA
9:15 AM – Union H.S., OK
10:00 AM – Broken Arrow H.S., OK
10:15 AM – Marian Catholic H.S., IL
10:30 AM – The Woodlands H.S., TX
10:45 AM – Owasso H.S., OK
11:00 AM – Round Rock H.S., TX
11:15 AM – Marcus H.S., TX
11:30 AM – Avon H.S., IN
11:45 AM – Castle H.S., IN
12:00 PM – O'Fallon Township H.S., IL
12:15 PM – Plymouth-Canton Educational Park, MI
12:30 PM – Blue Springs H.S., MO
12:45 PM – Center Grove H.S., IN
1:30 PM – Carmel H.S., IN
1:45 PM – Centerville H.S., OH
2:00 PM – Flower Mound H.S., TX
2:15 PM – North Hardin H.S., KY
2:30 PM – Homestead H.S., IN
2:45 PM – Walton H.S., GA
3:00 PM – Dobyns-Bennett H.S., TN
3:15 PM – Winston Churchill H.S., TX
3:30 PM – Lawrence Township, IN
3:45 PM – William Mason H.S., OH
4:00 PM – Fort Mill H.S., SC
4:15 PM – Fishers H.S., IN
4:30 PM – Mililani H.S., HI
4:45 PM – Exhibition: Miami University