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Haverfield to March in Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade

Many Cambridge Middle School and High School students will have extra motivation to get up early and watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade this year as Middle School music teacher and assistant High School band director Michele Haverfield will be marching with the Saluting America's Band Directors (SABD) Marching Band. 

Haverfield directing students in her classroom at the Middle School. Saluting America's Band Directors™ (SABD), was conceived as a way to recognize and salute the extraordinary dedication and accomplishments of band directors at all levels, including middle and high schools, colleges and universities, the military, and community bands.

The SABD Marching Band is a project of the Michael D. Sewell Memorial Foundation  created in 2017 to carry on the legacy of the late Mike Sewell, longtime band director in the Pickerington, Ohio school system. 

Haverfield, who plays trumpet, was one of 400 band directors selected out of more than 700 who auditioned to march in the Macy’s Parade this fall. 

“The organization formed a few years ago to advocate for music education,” Haverfield explained. “The SABD Marching Band performed at Rose Parade a couple of years ago (2022).” 

When the organization announced that they would be marching in the Macy’s Parade in 2023, Haverfield decided to audition. 

“Some people had to be turned away based more on logistics than talent,” Haverfield shared noting that finding accommodations for so many people in NYC the week of Thanksgiving is quite a challenge. “They gave some precedence if you knew someone who marched in the Rose Parade and was willing to give a recommendation. I have a friend who marched in the Rose Parade and gave me a little bump with a recommendation.” 

Haverfield will be playing the second trumpet part in the band and is looking forward to the week in the Big Apple. The band will rehearse on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday with the parade on Thursday. 

“I am a little concerned because I have to march and play for 2 ½ miles, but they have sent us all the music to practice,” Haverfield said partially joking. “I did not want to play the lead part because I haven’t played a lot since I’m busy teaching. I’ll let those young, right-out-of-college directors take the lead parts.” 

While in New York, the band will also get to experience some of the traditional NYC activities like ascending to the top of the John Hancock Building, seeing the Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular and doing some shopping at Macy’s, of course. 

As part of the commitment to the SABD Marching Band, the organization asks that each director work with their students on a community service project. This year, the focus is on recognizing first responders. 

Haverfield has already talked with colleagues at the middle school and is working with sixth grade students who are reading the book “Ground Zero” for language arts to make thank you cards to be delivered to first responders. 

She is directing a group of 8th grade students who will play taps at a flag memorial that the CMS student council is doing in honor of 9-11 and is working with the High School marching band on a special number they will perform at the home football game on September 8. 

“All the directors that have students in a band are encouraged to do service projects with their students,” Haverfield explained. “They suggested honoring our first responders and honoring those that passed on September 11th. Music is a great way to honor them because there ae so many great arrangements to choose from. We are going include first responders prominently when we honor the Veterans at the football game.”

Haverfield warming up the High School Marching Band prior to their pre-game show at McFarland Stadium a few years ago. Haverfield has talked to her students at the Middle School and High School who are excited because they all watch the parade and have all been supportive. She also received some financial support from the school district and the band boosters. 

“I’m excited to represent Cambridge, and I want to bring my students “along” as much as possible,” Haverfield said. “I know it is a significant investment, but it will be worth it once we get there.” 

Haverfield is also receiving a good deal of support from her family. Her husband David will accompany her on the trip. The couple met while both in the band at Bowling Green. David currently serves as the drum line instructor for the Dover High School marching band. 

They have three kids who are all involved in music. Son Will is a French Horn player who plays with the Kent State-Stark concert band. Son Josh recently graduated from Dover High School where he played trumpet in the band and is now a music major at the University of Evansville. Daughter Vic is a junior bass player in the Dover High School orchestra. 

Haverfield has been teaching at Cambridge for 32 years, ever since she received a phone call from Max Treier inviting her to apply for an open position. 

“Working with Max Treier, I was in very good hands,” Haverfield said. “I am trying to pay that forward by mentoring some of the young directors we’ve hired here and by working with the students.” 

She is also paying his legacy forward by being part of the Supporting America’s Band Directors and playing in the SABD Marching Band. 

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