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Alumni asked to spread word for musical reunion

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WORTHINGTON -- Class reunions are often scheduled to coincide with Worthington's King Turkey Day celebration, giving alumni a chance to catch up with classmates and take in the festivities.

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In conjunction with this year's festival, plans are under way for a reunion of a bigger scope -- a musical scope.

A homecoming reunion of the Worthington Trojan High School bands from the years 1946 to 1983 is being organized for the weekend of Sept. 13-15.

The focus of the reunion will be the legacies of two long-term band directors of the era: Gerald Niemeyer, 1946-1961; and Glenn Evensen, 1962-1983.

The celebration will include a reunion band under the direction of Richard "Dick" Larson of Denver, Colo., and a variety show featuring music and memories of the era, as well as other music-making opportunities.

Larson was a first-year junior high band director in 1961, when Niemeyer was tragically killed in an automobile accident, and Larson consequently took over the senior high band duties.

The year 2012 marks a few meaningful anniversaries in the history of the WHS Band.

It is 50 years since the graduation of the Class of 1962, whose members were in Niemeyer's last band, and it also marks the beginning of Larson's 50-year conducting career.

The fall of 1962 was the beginning of Evensen's 22 years at the helm of the band.

This year is also the 30th anniversary of the successful movement to save Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center. The weekend event will be promoted as a salute to music, with Memorial Auditorium serving as the center of activities.

A steering committee of alumni and Friends of the Auditorium has been organized for the reunion. Members include Marion Cashel and Russ Rickers (Class of 1949); Bonnie Habeck and Don Basche (1952); Gary Lindquist (1957); Karen Funk (1962); Roxann Polzine (1968); Margaret Hurlbut Vosburgh (1969); John Nordell (1971); Brenda DeSmith (1982); Arlen Foss and Steve Rubis.

An informational meeting about the musical reunion will be at 5:15 p.m. March 12 at Memorial Auditorium. Alumni are asked to spread the word and to contact the committee with class lists and addresses, particularly for former band members. Information can be directed to Polzine, 370-4416; email apolzine@centurytel.net.

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