Preakness, TV’s ‘Bachelor’ tied to York County

Dover’s Bill School, with his long trumpet, played “Call to the Gate” at the Preakness in May 2007. For a full story on the trumpet player, see below. Background posts: Artist Jeff Koons came back to York for a show and York County has produced star NFL players.

Remember that recent post about how York County people seem to regularly make the national news or are tied to big-time events?
Well, we have some more such links …


Just in the past few days, the York Daily Record/Sunday News ran a story on the trumpeter at the Preakness calling horses and riders to the gate with Dover ties and another piece on a woman with county links who won a man on TV’s “The Bachelor.”
Here’s the York Daily Record/Sunday News story’s lead on “The Bachelor” (May 27, 2007):

Although Tessa Horst has been engaged for several weeks, people around the country have only known about the marriage proposal for a few days. Even her mom.
But a lot has happened in a short time.
During Monday’s season finale of ABC’s “The Bachelor, Officer and a Gentleman,” Horst, daughter of York Township resident Romana Li, agreed to marry Lt. Andy Baldwin, a Navy medical officer stationed in Hawaii.

Certainly reinforces a newsroom saying here that all roads lead to York.
Here’s the story from the York Daily Record/Sunday News (May 2007) on Bill School:

In a century-old tradition that will play out today in Baltimore, Bill School will don a red coat and trumpet horses and riders to their post. But getting the Dover musician to blow his own horn is no easy task.
School will play “Call to the Gate” on a Herald trumpet at the Preakness.
On Thursday, he reluctantly discussed his role in the event, saying he doesn’t like to draw attention to himself.
School, 50, said he’s been playing the trumpet since he was a child. He played for his Pittsburgh-area high school band, later directed the Bermudian Springs High School marching band and today works as a school services representative for Menchey Music Service Inc.
Hanover resident Mike Hirsh — who plays in a band with School — told Preakness officials about School’s trumpet-playing ability.
“Bill is excellent,” he said. “I’m very proud of him. . . . I knew he could do the job.”
School was surprised to hear about the proposal.
“Mike called me and said, ‘Hey Bill, I got you the job of a lifetime,'” School said. “I thought it was a gig for the band.”
Playing the song is a longtime Preakness tradition that includes Chicago jazz great Joe Kelly, former Pimlico general manager Chick Lang said Thursday.
School was humbled by the invitation to play, and said he had been practicing the song.
“It’s definitely about the race. It’s not about me,” School said.
But School’s co-workers at Menchey’s in Hanover are eager to see him perform. Ben Jones works part time at Menchey’s and plays with School in the Gettysburg Brassworks and Sand Trap Brass bands.
“He’s a real pro,” Jones wrote in an e-mail.
“It’s pretty exciting . . . a big deal,” said John Richter, who works in the music department at Menchey’s.
Richter told School the Preakness usually features a party environment fitting for a jazzed-up rendition of the song.
“Probably the crowd will get a little kick out of it,” Richter said. “I know he’s going to do a great job.”

Other York Town Square posts involving national newsmakers or news stories with Dover ties: Jeff Koons, Ray Krone, Daniel Drawbaugh, Jeb Stuart, John Kuhn , Scott Strausbaugh and the intelligent design case.
Also: John “Clarkie” Souza, Cate Reinart (mother of Nick and Drew Lachey), long trumpeter Bill School, rock group Blind Melon’s Chris Thorn, Jeff Koons, Part II, Gov. George Leader, weightlifting guru Bob Hoffman.

About Jim McClure

Editor of the York Daily Record/Sunday News, ydr.com and its many digital products. Journalism/history blogger: yorktownsquare.com. Author or co-author of seven York County, Pa., history books.

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