Serina Tressler, Cami Groce, Clay Leitzel, Gabby Koehler, Emily Kuhn
As members of a marching band, we often get labeled as “band geeks,” “total nerds,” and “losers.” Despite the lack of understanding and recognition of our talents among outsiders, there is a great kinship within our group. The best way to show this is to hear it from us directly, and we hope these quotes help explain what cannot be otherwise expressed.
“Marching band is one of the most fun experiences in high school. Yes, sometimes we spend hours upon hours outside in the heat of summer and sweat through our clothes while rehearsing for field shows. Sometimes we get annoyed with each other or even the director. Sometimes we don’t put our best selves forward. In the end though, it all becomes worth it. Every single second that I did not enjoy band is overshadowed by all of the amazing moments — from hearing an applauding crowd or a cheering opposing band after a great performance, to just simply having some good laughs with my friends in the stands. The whole experience of marching band is one that I wouldn’t trade for anything. So, really, what is boils down to is: I love my band.”
“People may say marching band is stupid. In my eyes, marching band is a great out-of-school activity. In ways, it can teach you skills that could be useful. Marching band is a fun activity that lets you learn a person’s personality and lets you get to know them. This lets me hang out with my friends after school before football games and on the band bus. Marching band helped me form many friendships that I hope to keep. Marching band can be brutal at times, but in the end, I am able to perform what I have learned to many people, which feels rewarding. It can teach kids discipline, flexibility, time management, and many other life skills trust they can use for the future. In the end, marching band will be one of the best activities I was and will ever be a part of.”
“Some of my first memories of EJ are of band and the people I met there. These were my first friends and the ones I will ultimately remember the most when I leave here. I never thought I would like marching band because of the difficulties involved, but as I grew older and learned what it really was, I realized that neither the marching nor the band was the most important part; it was the experiences we had that mattered. To me, band means ohana, ohana means family, and family means nobody gets left behind. Even in the hardest of moments and the darkest of days, marching band forced me to be surrounded by unconditional support, something that is scarcely found anywhere else. Though I may have complained along the way, band has shaped me into who I am and that I will never forget.”
“Marching band will always be the biggest highlight of my high school career by far. From dying in the heat at band camp to two hour long parades to freezing cold football games, every moment was special. Because of marching band, I made many friends who mean a lot to me. Whatever people may say, our band is a family. Everyone is friends with each other and we stick together through the good times and the bad. That's one thing I love about our band: we're all friends. No one is ever excluded. Though, now I'm a senior, and life moves on too quickly. It’s so incredibly difficult this year to conclude something that was such a large source of happiness to me, but the memories I made while involved and the people I met and became close to will always have a special place in my heart. I’d just like to say thank you to all of the amazing people that made my last year as a member of the EJ Marching Band the best yet.”
“The East Juniata Marching Band has made a huge impact on my life as I’m spending this year being the banner holder. Through marching band, I've learned so many things and had so many great experiences from football game field shows to parades. Marching band means to me being a part of a great family that works really hard together to put on something great. What I like the most about marching band is having people that are there for me when I need pointed in the right direction and being able to listen to the band play all of the time. I think that marching band is a great way to bring people together through the same love of music.”