Goodbye Marching Band, thank you for all the memories

A+collage+from+some+of+the+best+Marching+Band+memories

Lauren Brace

A collage from some of the best Marching Band memories

“How does it feel knowing that this will be your last game?”

I still don’t think I’ve fully comprehended the end. 

After a prolonged season—longer than I ever imagined—I was always getting ready for one more game. One more Friday night under the stadium lights, one more time getting my uniform off of the trailer, one more time laughing with my friends in the football stands. 

Starting freshman year, I was admittedly overwhelmed by the expectations and traditions I was thrown into. Nonetheless, I bonded with my upperclassmen friends and found myself smiling with every unique opportunity that band presented. 

I persevered through the heat, rain, and snow. Still, at the end of the day, I would come home smiling. Taking part in something larger than myself, I got chills listening to the masterpiece we created; somehow, I was lucky enough to be a part of it. 

Without marching band, my fall would have lacked the rhythm I find my stride in and the melody I float upon, a consistent pattern to tie me back to an abundance of memories and emotions. The crescendo of joy that came with every chant and playing of the fight song will never experience one last repeat; this everlasting fermata of performances has received its final cutoff. 

Bonding with my section in competitions such as tug of war and “bunny bunny,” laughing harder than ever before at get-togethers after football games, and running back to perform a set “one more time” will now forever remain in the past. I couldn’t be more grateful for the friendships that came with this crazy adventure. Of course, I’ll still get to see everyone, but we’ll never all step onto the football field together again. 

The crescendo of joy that came with every chant and playing of the fight song will never experience one last repeat; this everlasting fermata of performances has received its final cutoff. ”

An overnight stay at Western Michigan University, a parking lot concert, a trip to Disney World, and a final performance at Ford Field. The tedious events of a regular school day fade away in the face of such colorful highlights. I cannot fathom a world without the vibrance that music and friendships bring to it—without the harmony that brings joy to the most ordinary situations. 

Dedication, concentration, and practice: the building blocks of a successful performance. Respect, kindness, teamwork: the essentials to creating a wonderful experience. When all these elements combine, marching band creates an atmosphere that I will never take for granted. 

It may be difficult for some to find a group of people who is willing to stick by their side through thick and thin, but with marching band, I immediately found a sense of belonging and worth. In time, I stepped into my own role as an upperclassman after being inspired by those before me. Growing into a leadership position, I eventually had nothing left to do but look upon my fellow saxophone players with pride and admiration. 

I may never find enough words to truly thank all the musicians who have impacted my life and the opportunities that have guided me through my high school career. No matter where my future path leads, I know that the lessons and skills from all four marching band seasons will not only provide constant support but also light a path to bring me back home.