Five Peoria Unified band directors have been selected to join a marching band from across the United States in the iconic Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Nov. 23.
The Saluting America’s Band Directors project brings together band directors from across the country which ultimately forms the Band Director’s Marching Band and Peoria Unified has five educators selected to join the parade this year and represent the students and staff in Arizona’s fifth largest school district.
The following Peoria Unified employees will be representing Arizona in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade:
• Lizeth Gil, band director at Canyon and Kachina Elementary Schools, Peoria High School Panther Pride Marching Band staff member
• Bryan Malone, band director at Cheyenne and Cotton Boll Elementary Schools, Peoria High School Panther Pride Marching Band staff member
• Jeffrey Malone, band director for Peoria High School Panther Pride Marching Band
• Kate Menasco, band director from Centennial High School
• Carmela Rubino, Peoria High School Panther Pride Marching Band staff member, choir director and music educator at Canyon Elementary School beginning in January 2024
Long-time Centennial High School band director and teacher, and Peoria High School graduate, Menasco shares, “I teach life, band is just my vehicle.”
A unique twist to the five Peoria Unified participants is that all five have a direct tie to Peoria High School, the oldest high school in the district. Menasco and Gil are both graduates of Peoria High School. Malone, Malone and Rubino are all Panther Pride Marching Band staff members.
The parade entry is meant to recognize the accomplishments of band directors under the theme, “America’s band directors: We teach music. We teach life.” Nationally recognized music educator Jon Waters will be directing the Band Director’s Marching Band in the parade.
For more information on the Saluting America’s Band Directors, visit http://banddirectorsalute.org.