Two students from the Union Middle School Band program were chosen to participate in the NEIBA Honor Band held at Oelwein High School on Saturday, December 7, 2013. Lauren Harrigan, daughter of William and Lesley Harrigan, and Joe Ruzicka, son of BJ and Janel Ruzicka, each received this honor.
Students were chosen from approximately 60 participating schools in the northeast district of Iowa and two bands of 130 players were formed of highly qualified middle school musicians. The groups rehearsed all day and presented their concert at the Oelwein High School gymnasium.
The two bands were under the direction of Mr. Randy Atkinson, director of Taft Middle School bands in Cedar Rapids, and Dr. Travis Cross, UCLA Professor of Music. This was the 50th anniversary of NEIBA and works by Iowa composers were commissioned and premiered that evening by both bands.