April 13, 1966: Boyertown Band Night Acknowledges Accomplishments of Band Unit Led by Arlen Saylor


By Margaret Leidy Harner from her book One Day at a Time: A Social History of Boyertown, PA.

April 13, 1966: Today is Boyertown Band Day in Pennsylvania, proclaimed by Governor William W. Scranton in recognition of our Senior High School Marching Unit’s outstanding performance in the 45th annual Saint Petersburg Florida Festival of States, compiling an impressive list of “firsts.”

For the first time the same band won both of the top awards, the Heart of St. Petersburg Plaque for creating the most goodwill and the best impression during the celebration and the Florida Governor’s Cup as the best marching unit in the festival, with the highest score in 45 years., 395 out of a possible 400 points. Boyertown is also the first band north of the Mason-Dixon Line to win the competition in one of the most memorable performances by a high school band in the history of the event.

These accolades were made possible by the tireless work and dedication of Arlen Saylor, the director of the internationally -renowned marching unit. Saylor was acknowledged for the man honors and national recognition he had brought to Boyertown with the school district’s fine music program by his selection as the 1973 Man of the Year.

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