Grand marching band

A senior says goodbye after State marching band


Emma Downey

The marching band warms up before the football game on Oct. 12. This was some musicians last time marching on Bauer Field. ” The kids worked really hard this year together and had a real sense of unity,” band director Brett Bradley.

As State marching band of her senior year quickly approached, senior Hannah Armstrong reminisced on the last three years of marching band.

Armstrong was hopeful for a superior, which is the best rank a band can receive. “I think if we can stay focused in practice that we can bump it up to the points that we need to get a superior,” she said.

Armstrong mentioned that it was harder for the band to concentrate, mostly out of excitement, as it drew closer to State marching band. “We’re all trying to stay motivated since it’s towards the end and it’s getting cold outside,” she said, “but we’re hanging in there for sure.”

At the State competition on Oct. 20, last Saturday, the North Platte High School Marching band received an excellent rank, instead of a superior. A superior being the highest a band can rank. The NPHS band was awarded superiors the last two years. “It went okay, but not like we wanted,” band director Brett Bradley said.

Armstrong had mixed feelings about stepping onto the field for the last time. “Going into the competition all I could think was that it was the last time I’d perform on the field and I wanted it to be a good one,” she said.

This year’s seniors made huge contributions to the morale of the band junior drum major Sarah Phares said. “The seniors were pretty positive all year and kind of helped guide the new people.”

As marching band comes to a close, Bradley says it’s a bittersweet moment. “It’s fun because you watch them grow up and become leaders themselves, but it’s always bittersweet because then they’re going to be leaving,” he said.

The thing that Armstrong will miss most, she says, is the family aspect of the band. “It’s gonna be hard to find a group of that many people that are that accepting and that supportive again,” she said.

Armstrong is going to miss it, but she’s happy that she did marching band all four years.

Armstrong also wields a unique perspective as both a cheerleader and a marching band member. “Sometimes it’s hard cause I have cheer practice at 6:15 in the morning and then I have band at 7:30,” she said.

Despite both activities being time-consuming, Armstrong finds it easy because she is passionate about both. “Since I enjoy both it’s not really that hard because I love doing them a lot,” she said.

In the end Armstrong said that the long hours get tough, but it’s always worth it. “I will never regret all of the effort I put into band, the life lessons I’ve learned are far more valuable than any trophy.”