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about Mr. Harbaugh


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Michael Harbaugh

Michael Harbaugh is instructor of Orchestra at the Beloit Jr.-Sr. High School and Orchestra and Instrumental Music at the Beloit Elementary School since 1977.  Michael graduated from Hutchinson High School in 1973 and Fort Hays State University in 1977.  Michael studied viola with KMEA Hall of Fame Member Ed Moyers and orchestra with KMEA Hall of Fame Member Lyle Dilley.  Mr. Harbaugh has taught for 43 years in the Beloit Public Schools.  Mr. Harbaugh is also the conductor of the Beloit Community Orchestra, an organization he helped establish in 1980.

  Mr. Harbaugh has served on the executive board of the Kansas chapter of the American String Teacher's Association since 1992, serves as treasurer for that organization, chairman of the KASTA Middle Level State Orchestra, secretary for the Western Kansas Orchestra Festival Association, an active member of the board and staging director of the Beloit Community Concert Association.  Mr. Harbaugh serves as Manager of the KSHSAA State Music Festival for Large Groups in Beloit. He has served as clinician and conductor for the High Plains Music Camp Middle Level Orchestra, Salina “Strings and Things”, KSU “String Fling”, Junior Division Concert Orchestra for the Midwestern Music Camp at the University of Kansas 2000-2006, and KMEA Southeast District Mass Orchestra and currently conductor of the Salina Youth Symphony Preparatory Orchestra. Mr. Harbaugh, a violist, has been an active member of the Hays Symphony Orchestra since 1973 and also performs with the Salina Symphony.

  Mr. Harbaugh was selected as “Teacher of the Year” for the Beloit Public Schools USD 273 1999 and received the “Certificate of Merit Award” from the Kansas Chapter of ASTA on February 25, 2000. Mr. Harbaugh was recognized as the 2001-2002 KMEA NW District “Outstanding High School Music Educator” at the District Mini-Convention at FHSU on December 8, 2001 and again on December 11, 2010.  Mr. Harbaugh was honored as a finalist for the KMEA State Music Teacher of the Year representing the NW District on February 24, 2011.  Michael was inducted into the Kansas Chapter of the American String Teacher’s Association “String Teacher’s Hall of Fame” in 2014.  This award is the highest award given by KASTA.

                The Beloit High School Orchestra was selected to perform at the Kansas Music Educator’s In-Service Workshops on February 26, 2005.  The Orchestra enjoyed the opportunity to play in the Wichita Century II Concert Hall.  Selection to perform at KMEA is the highest honor for a Large Performing Group in Kansas.  The Beloit Community Orchestra was selected to perform at the KMEA “President’s Concert” on February 23, 2012.       Mr. Harbaugh and his wife, DeeAnn, have two children and one grandchild, Alex, age 34 and Alison, age 30.  Alex, a graduate of FHSU in Math and KU Masters Degree in Acoustical Architecture is a Design Services Supervisor at Meyer Sound in Berkeley California.  Alison graduated from Kansas Wesleyan University in 2011 with a degree in Accounting and minor in Music. She serves as Administrative Assistant, Education Coordinator and Music Librarian for the Salina Symphony.

Alison has a son, Knox Davis-Harbaugh born in 2018.   DeeAnn is an insurance clerk at the Beloit Medical Center, serves as the Clerk of Session and Associate Choir Director at the Presbyterian Church, President and Secretary of the Beloit Concert Association, and is active in the Beloit Community Orchestra and Allegro Music Club.

  Beloit, county seat of Mitchell County, is located in the Solomon River Valley in the north central area of Kansas. It is also in the center of the Smoky Hills in the land of the Kansas Post Rock. It is located on State Highways 24, 14 and 9. Beloit is 50 minutes from Interstate 70 and 30 minutes from U.S. Highway 81.  The population of the City of Beloit is listed at 3,170 and the population of Mitchell County is listed as 6,128.  There are 1,358 families in Beloit and 2,086 households.  Beloit is the home of the North Central Kansas Technical College.

  String instrument playing has been a long time integral part of the Beloit Community.  Cleo Riley taught orchestra in the Beloit Public Schools from 1946 until his retirement in 1977.  He was also the first conductor of the Beloit Community Orchestra. 

  The Beloit Community Orchestra has 65 members from North Central Kansas.  Impetus for the Orchestra came from the Post Rock University, a free adult education program. The Orchestra gave its first performance in March 1981.

  The Beloit High School participates in the KSHSAA as a class 3A school with 239 (9-12) students as of September 20, 2018.  The High School Orchestra program rehearsed before school on Tuesday and Thursday mornings thru 2003.  The BHS Orchestra began meeting 3rd hour (9:42 to 10:30 AM) daily in 2004.