Long-time band enthusiast gets chance to lead Mustangs

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 26 May 2015 at 12:00 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

MEDINA – Mike Dreyfus, a Medina Mustang Band booster for nearly 20 years, leads the band while it plays patriotic songs on Memorial Day at State Street Park. Dreyfus also led the band on the parade route from the Olde Pickle Factory on Park Avenue to the park on East Center Street.

He won a contest to be guest conductor for the parade. People paid $1 to vote for one of five guest conductors and Dreyfus was the winner.

“They march real fast,” Dreyfus said after the parade.

Dreyfus joined drum major Chris Keller (pictured at right) in keeping the band on pace.

“He did a good job,” sophomore Kristian Snyder said about Dreyfus. “He kept in time very well and he made his commands very clear.”

Snyder said Dreyfus is popular among the 130-plus kids in the band. He is a vocal supporter at their many parades and events, and works hard to raise money for the Mustangs.

“He’s been one of the biggest boosters,” Snyder said. “He’s a very nice man.”

Chris Keller, left, and Mike Dreyfus lead the band while it plays the National Anthem and other patriotic songs at State Street Park.

Dreyfus became active with the band when his son Kip, Class of 2003, joined as an eighth-grader. Dreyfus has been impressed by the band members’ dedication and accomplishment, and the pride they bring to the community.

He worked 20 years in probation and then 20 years as a substance abuse counselor. He said the band is a great prevention program, helping the kids to connect to the community, learn discipline and resist temptations with drugs and alcohol.

Dreyfus, 68, said he doesn’t have too much musical ability. But it was a thrill to join the band on Memorial Day, with an enthusiastic crowd along the way.

“This is something I can cross off my bucket list,” he said.