Jamie Perez with KCAU visited Orange City
to talk with the longtime musical leader about his decision to retire.
"It's kind of surreal. I've done this so many times, over so many years. I've tried not to think about it being the end. I'm afraid it might be a little too emotional for me," Connell said.
He said he'll miss the band members most after being a part of more than 300 Orange City Tulip Festival parades over the past four decades.
"When other people haven't been so encouraging in my life, Mr. Connell has always said, you know, 'Go after it,' and he's always there for questions or to give me advice," band member Marissa Beagy said.
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Band director Steve Connell is retiring after 42 years of leading the Pride of the Dutchmen Marching Band.