“The Black Hills are alive...”
by Harry Peterson
[There is now another New Horizons Band in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.]

The one and only New Horizons Band in South Dakota is located in the Black Hills (mountains) in Rapid City. The band was founded in October 1997, when 16 adventurous souls showed up in response to an ad in the local newspaper. Eight of those had never played a musical instrument, but expressed interest in learning. Another six joined in January 1998. Today the band's roster numbers 50. Of the original 22 members, 14 are still playing.

The director of the band is Milo Winter, a popular and respected music educator, who retired after a distinguished career in the Rapid City school system. Winter learned of New Horizons Bands from a presentation by Roy Ernst at an American Bandmasters Association convention. He also knew that music could be a stimulating and enjoyable activity for all ages.

One of the highlights over the years was a trip to Brookings, South Dakota, in February 2003 for an appearance at the annual meeting of the South Dakota Bandmasters Association. Accepting the invitation after appearing at the same meeting four years earlier, the band had a thrilling and grueling bus trip through an all day winter ice storm to get there. In concert the next day, no one showed signs of the trip and performed admirably.

We also have an 18-20 piece dance band, playing the “big band sound,” that rehearses twice a week, and an ensemble, The Saxy Seniors, a saxophone quintet that has weekly rehearsals.

We have a dedicated, enthusiastic and interested group of seniors. They not only enjoy music, but also get great pleasure and enjoyment out of making music. We present numerous concerts in our community at such places as Mount Rushmore National Monument, nursing homes, retirement homes, museums, schools, city bandstand in the park, conventions, and for charitable organizations.

With apologies to Richard Rogers, “The Black Hills are Alive With the Sound of Music,” coming from the Rapid City New Horizons Band.


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Rapid City New Horizons Band
Rapid City, South Dakota

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