Seeking Help From Cincinnati Reds Fans [1983]

It was the spring or summer of 1983. So much was going on that it fogs my memory a little bit. I was graduating high school, preparing to go to college, rehearsing with the high school band for State Fair, band camp, dealing with my summer job, and more.

But there was ONE other thing that I did in the midst of all of that.

My high school band director had submitted my audition papers to be in the first-ever Cincinnati Reds High School Honors Band. I was told that over 14,000 kids from Indiana and the surrounding area had auditioned in an attempt to gain one of the 124 positions that they had available for this unique marching band.

I was one of the players chosen.

There are things that I do not remember about the day. I don’t remember the drive, or my mom packing sack lunches. I only learned a few years ago that my mom had NO CASH when we went, and that our ONLY hope of getting back home relied on whether or not there was a Marathon gas station in Cincinnati, since she had a credit card for that station.

I also don’t remember the sheet music that I studied to be ready to perform that day. I can’t name one song.

I don’t even remember if we played before the game, or at the mid-way point, or whenever.

What I DO remember from that day is that I got to meet and shake hands with Pete Rose. I also met his wife.

It was a “home game” for the Reds at Riverfront Stadium, which had a capacity of 40,007.

I remember that everyone wore their high school band uniforms. Anyone who can find video or photos of the band can easily spot me, since I was the ONLY player on the field wearing a cape. I played snare drum.

Also, I was put in charge of the drum line, and I was given 20 minutes to work up an entrance cadence, a mid-point cadence, and a march-off cadence. I recall how thrilling it was to be working with such top-notch musicians. Everyone was on board, and the drummers in the line actually let me lead.

Finally, I remember that they gave all of us special medals. I have most of my medals, but cannot find that one. It might be in my ex-wife’s storage unit, and I have my son looking for it. Knowing her, she probably threw it in the trash.

A few months ago, I wrote an email to the Cincinnati Reds in the hopes that they could help me out with finding some photos or video. They said that they had nothing available.

I have searched via Google, using a variety of terms to narrow it down.


Do you have a family member who religiously ATTENDED Cincinnati Reds games?

Do you have a family member who was a musician in 1983 who may have participated? I know there are only 123 other people, but it’s worth a shot.

Do you have any photos or video of The Cincinnati Reds performing in 1983?

Do you remember seeing the band march and perform?

If you do, then simply asking around would be help enough.

My goal, of course, is to find some photos or video of that event.

To anyone who finds this and can help, thank you in advance for asking and looking.

Riverfront Stadium, capacity 40,007: Where I found my biggest marching band audience.

Published by DrumWild

Writing about drums, music, and philosophy.

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