By Don Rush
Every two years the Oxford High School Marching Band and Orchestra takes a trip – either to Florida to Disney World or to New York. This year’s trip to New York had an unforeseen plot twist.
According to band instructor Jim Gibbons, one of his students had lost his identification in a souvenir store while touring the city.
“It just so happens,” Gibbons said, “We We have an alumni who lives in New York on the upper east side who, Olivia Thompson (Class of 2016). She had two of her friends from Oxford visiting with her the same time we were there (Matt Olson & Julia Shoots, also Oxford 2016 grads). She took them souvenir shopping and happened to go into the same souvenir store and found his ID. Think of it, all of these people in New York City and it happens to be Oxford alumni who come across this kid’s ID.”
Gibbons said Thompson knew the Oxford band was in town and made arrangements to meet with them in Times Square to return the lost identification.
According to Gibbons 150 students (freshmen through seniors) and 50 parents and chaperones drove to New York earlier this month for the trip. The trip started on a Wednesday and they were back home by Sunday.
“We had three days in the city,” he said. “The orchestra performed a half hour concert at St. Paul’s The Apostle Church on Thursday morning. The marching band performed for half an hour at the base of the Statue of Liberty on Friday morning. And, the jazz band performed on the deck of the USS Intrepid aircraft carrier museum on Saturday morning.”
While in New York, students were able to tour the city, visit the 9-11 memorial, they saw the musicals Hamilton and Aladdin and went to the top of the Rockefeller Center.
“They had a great time,” Gibbons said. “They’re all musicians, and it’s a chance for them to see the professional music world and when we do our performances, it’s a chance to perform before an international audience. We saw Hamilton, but also went to Trinity Church where Alexander Hamilton is buried. There was an historical connection there.”
The trips to and from Oxford, MI and New York City took 15 hours each, he added.