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Help strike up the band

Published 9:36pm Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Marching band uniforms can be quite hot.

I remember way back to my high school years and my time in my school’s marching band. Those unflattering wool uniforms were not forgiving during early-season football games and band competitions in blistering heat. A sports drink or other refreshing snack would have been a much-appreciated reprieve.

While I’m sure band uniforms are much better looking these days, the need to help keep the band members fed and hydrated is still important. The band is an important fixture in high schools everywhere.

Lakeland High School’s band booster club is trying to provide just those items to the 96 members of its marching band through two upcoming fundraisers.

Both events will be held at NAPA Auto Parts on Pruden Boulevard from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., the first this Saturday, according to booster club president Lisa Williams. The second car wash is planned for Aug. 24. The cost is $10 per vehicle, and band members will wash cars under the supervision of parents and boosters.

The band’s expenses include equipment, travel and much more.

“During the performance season, we provide meals to the band after their halftime performance, as well as snacks and Gatorade during parades, away games and competitions,” Williams stated.

Some of the best marching-band memories I have are not just from football halftime shows but also from the out-of-town competitions we attended. We held many fundraisers to help cut down on the costs for members, but as students we still had to have money for meals and other expenses during the trips. It would have been a great help to have food provided for us during performances.

Donations will also be taken at the car washes, Williams stated.

I distinctly remember selling navel oranges, frozen pizzas, candy and maybe even Krispy Kreme donuts to help support the band in high school. In the fall, the LHS boosters will be selling Joe Corbi’s kits, containing pizza dough, cookie dough and “other family favorites.”

And the band is not just limited to football season. Most marching bands perform at parades, graduations and other events.

Another reason for the booster club’s fundraising is a year-end banquet that boosters hold to honor band members.

Marching band is a great extracurricular activity and helps students learn many skills in addition to their music ability. Kudos to the LHS booster club and good luck to the group.

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