Top performers: Reed City band claims Div. 1 title

Superintendent: ‘They are well deserving of an award like this’ 

Reed City Area Public Schools superintendent Michael Sweed highlighted the school band's success and upcoming performances during the monthly board meeting on Oct. 18. (Herald Review photo/Olivia Fellows)

Reed City Area Public Schools superintendent Michael Sweed highlighted the school band's success and upcoming performances during the monthly board meeting on Oct. 18. (Herald Review photo/Olivia Fellows)

REED CITY — Reed City Schools knows how to put on a performance and the district’s band has a title to prove it.

During a recent school board meeting, the board and Superintendent Michael Sweet recognized the Reed City Schools band for their success this year and the acceptance of a Division 1 title.

Sweet said the band’s performance Oct. 13 was an impressive display, where the band performed “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen, “Into the Unknown” from Frozen, “Dancing Queen” by Abba, and “Think” by Aretha Franklin.

“They have been practicing since the beginning of August, and they’ve put hundreds of hours into a nine-minute routine that they’d perfected over and over again,” Sweet said. “The title of the performance was ‘A Royal Show’, and everything had some sort of royal connection, and they were led by drum major Stephen Roberts and Heather Vansickle, who accepted the award on Wednesday night for their Division 1 rating.”

Sweet shared that band director Jamie Denslow said he was impressed with the band’s progress and the hard work the students have put into each performance.

“Mr. Denslow said that he was especially proud of the confidence that the students played with and the polish especially considering the task of the last 18 months of teaching conditions,” Sweet said. “He was proud of the band students, and they are well deserving of an award like this.

“They have 15 minutes to get on the field and do their thing and then get off, so I enjoy watching them go on and off just as much as the performance because they’ll do little things to show their snap or polish and pizzazz. We’re looking forward to their performance coming up this Friday, it sounds like it’ll be a really cool show.”

The band will perform at the ‘Glow Show’ from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23, at Reed City Area Public Schools, at 225 West Church Ave., a performance that will include performances by school marching bands from Big Rapids, Clare, Mesick, Harrison, Chippewa Hills, and Lake City.

The performance is set to include unique glow elements with the band’s uniforms and instruments laden with glow sticks.

“We’re excited that there will be a few more chances to see our Reed City band students perform,” Sweet said. “I’d never seen it before, and my first show was a great experience, they’ve really excelled this year and it’s worth seeing.”

Questions regarding Reed City band events can be sent to For more information on RCAPS and their programming, visit the school’s official website at


October is designated as National Principals Month, and many schools are appreciating their resident principals including Reed City Area Public Schools.

Board president Jamie Eichenberg said the principals of each school have done a great deal to improve the education and well-being of students at the school, especially in the midst of a pandemic.

“Our principals and assistant principals help keep our buildings running smoothly,” Eichenberg said. “The National Association of Secondary Principals had a statement on their website that I liked because it described well exactly what a principal is. It said that principals set the academic tone for their schools, and it’s their vision, determination, and dedication that provide the mobilizing force for achieving student success.

“Stacey Webber, with GT Norman; Kris Griffin, dean of students at GT Norman; Dave Carlson, in the middle school; Danielle Breedlove, assistant principal in the middle school; Matt Hudson, in the high school; and Stefanie Shoemaker, as well, have all been so amazing,” she added. “Our principals are integral to our success as a district, and we appreciate them every day.”

Superintendent Michael Sweet highlighted the district’s purchase of jackets for each school staff principal and assistant principal as a thank you.

“We got these jackets as a sign of appreciation for all that our principals do,” Sweet said. “We really couldn’t function without them and all the work they put in, and these jackets were a small and cool way for us to thank them for what they put in.”