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Sheridan man fulfills lifetime dream of playing in Rose Parade

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Posted at 5:00 PM, Jan 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-17 15:02:34-05

The Rose Parade in Pasadena, California has helped celebrate the new year since 1890.

This year, band directors from all over the country made up one of the bands.

Two directors from Montana and two from Wyoming were among those making the 5-1/2 mile trek through Pasadena on Saturday.

Chad Rose, director of bands for Sheridan High School, played the trombone in the Band Directors Marching Band in the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year's Day.

"Oh, it's incredible," Rose said. "This is a place where the bands, rather than an afterthought, they're the focal point of the parade. The Rose Parade has done a great job of making us feel like an important part of this is a huge tradition. This is the pinnacle of all parades."

The Saluting America's Band Directors project is part of the Michael D. Sewell Memorial Foundation, which honors Sewell and other band directors.

"He had taken his bands previously to the Rose Bowl four times and the foundation just wanted to make certain that they honored band directors," Rose said.

Nearly 300 band directors make up the first band to also have a float in the parade.

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Courtesy: Connie DePauw

"The reason they did the float was to make certain they didn't take away a band spot from another high school," Rose said. "They registered us as a parade float with 300 walking attendees with it."

Judges gave the Showmanship Award to the Michael D. Sewell Memorial Foundation float, one of 24 awards.

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Rose said relationships make it work for the band directors and their students.

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Courtesy: Sandy Meisel

"It's a group of people that truly love their students and love the art of music performance, and especially band performance," Rose said. "And we're happy to represent not only the rest of the band directors around the country, but also our students that we all have at home that we're looking forward to seeing after break."

Chad's brother Brent, director of bands at Kelly Walsh High School in Casper is also in the director's band.

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Courtesy: Chad Rose

And Chad's niece, Brent's daughter, played in another band for the Rose Parade.

"Three Roses marching in the Rose Parade, which is kind of crazy," Chad Rose said. "This is the Super Bowl of parades. So as a Rose, I've dreamed of it for a lifetime. So it's really nice to be a part of the Rose Parade."