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BNL's Roger Gales To Be Honored At Concert
Updated May 8, 2017 6:50 AM | Filed under: Education
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(BEDFORD) - After teaching close to 3,000 Bedford North Lawrence students over the past 23 years, Roger Gales will be directing his last high school band concert as a BNL Band Director tomorrow, Sunday, May 7th at 2:30 p.m.

Following the concert, there will be a small reception to honor Gales and his hard work with the BNL Band program.

When asked if this Sunday will be a bitter-sweet moment Gales said, "I don't know if it will be bitter but its going to be emotional, I'm sure. When you put that much of yourself into something for that period of time and realize it. It's time [to retire] and I'm ready. I'm looking forward to retirement."

He has been teaching music since 1972 where he started in Western New York as a band director. He left that position in 1980 to obtain his master's degree in church music and pastoral ministry from the Asbury Theological Seminary Kentucky campus.

Gales started teaching at BNL in 1995 where he was first hired on at Shawswick Elementary on a temporary contract. He was there for a year when the high school Assistant Band Director position opened.

Gales has definitely made a huge impact on the lives of the students he taught at BNL. He taught many of them for six years straight, "As I look over my career, one of the advantages I see of being a music educator-[rather] than being say a math teacher or an English teacher where you'll have a kid in class for one semester or one year- we start working with these kids in the sixth grade and have contact with them by the time we graduate."

BNL Band Alumni proved just how much of an impact Gales made on them when they flocked back to their school to relive their High School Pep Band days. "Back at the last basketball game for pep band, we had invited alumni to come back and I had over 100 come back and play with the pep band. And that just blew me away. They came from all over the state."

On Sunday the band will be playing a piece that was written by Gales in 1998; its called, "Bikes." Gales' son rode a bicycle cross country for the Fraternity Pi Kappa Phi to raise money and participated in Little 500 during his time at IU. Gales wrote the piece to portray his own musical impressions of his son's rides.

Gales wants to leave this message to present and future BNL band members, "Work hard. Enjoy the opportunities that you have. We are very fortunate that our school corporation and our school board is very supportive of the arts."

Below are two pieces of Gales' musical talent:

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