Marching season for band and guard students runs from summer (prior to school starting), to almost the end of the first semester. It comprises camps, football games, competitions – attendance at all of these, and practice, is mandatory. There are many volunteers and staff members that work with the students during this time – volunteers and staff will treat the students with respect, and in return, students will treat the volunteers and staff with respect. We ask that students try their hardest at everything they do. Marching season is more physical than most people believe, and students are often shocked at how much of an athlete they become! At College Park High School we strive for a world class experience of learning and personal growth within our program. We achieve this by working together.
The marching season classification is completely separate to the band class students will have been assigned to on their schedule (which was based on their audition in spring). The number of varsity marching positions available for each section is entirely dependent upon the requirements of the music/show each year. A student may be Varsity one year, and not the next. All positions are vital to the performance.
- Varsity students march at ALL games and competitions
- Non-Varsity students march at ALL games but NOT competitions. Instead, these students assist with other essential roles at competition, such as stage crew, pit crew, tech crew
The only band students who may not be marchers at all, are fall athletes whose sport conflicts, or those who have a health condition that prohibits marching band. Even then, those students who are excused, still attend games and competitions.
Practice is held after school, 8 hours a week over 3 days, from when school starts until the end of the football season. We also have a run through prior to every football game and competition, and the occasional Saturday practice may be required. On Thursday or Friday football games, students do not return home from their school day until after the game – which could be 10.00-11.00pm.
During marching season, practice is held in The Woodlands Church parking lot, right behind College Park (blue square). This is where students will need to be dropped off and picked up all marching season. For safety reasons, and remembering we have many new student drivers, please drive carefully and use the one way system by driving straight down the center aisle when entering the parking lot, and exiting using the upper and lower paths. Never park on the practice lot, or drop off using the road between school and The Woodlands Church parking lots (identified by red stars).
This is a BUSY time, and students often pick up great time management skills during this time! Homework and class loads are always a question for parents, yet students seem to be more organized in fall. We have many AP, Honors and Science Academy students. Our busiest month is October – lovingly referred to as “Bandtober”!
We will provide you with a calendar – but flexibility is key. Make sure to be fully connected through all our communication methods, and stay on top of calendar changes. Things can and do change, and band families are the best at adapting. It is important students take responsibility for ensuring they arrive early and are always prepared.
At the start of the school year, band students will be given an instrument locker in the band hall. The band hall is where band students will go at the start and finish of any day in school. Students should NOT request a regular locker at orientation – if a regular locker is required, a Band Director will arrange one situated along the band hall, in the first week of school. Some students like to have a regular locker in addition to their instrument locker, to store items that don’t need to go to and from school or that are heavy to carry around. For example;
- a hat
- fanny pack
- marching practice clothes in a small bag (must be washed daily)
- water jug (must be washed daily and filled at home)
- marching instrument (concert instruments cannot be used outdoors).
There are no prior skills or abilities needed to join the Color Guard, in any grade. Anyone can come to the auditions and try their best! The staff will teach students what they need, no matter what background they have. If you do have dance, gymnastics, cheer, or any other performing activity experience you will be able to use that experience to help you progress through the guard and really develop your abilities.
- Instrument – with name tag on case (band students) and concert instrument for masterclasses at summer band
- Any music issued by Directors in wallets in a black binder
- Full 64oz water jug – with name on!
- Snacks & money/food for lunch
- Small backpack/bag to keep anything you’re not wearing or carrying in fanny pack (ex. food, extra sunscreen/bug repellant)
- Fanny pack to hold:
- Portable battery charger (band students)
- Phone/smart device
In spring, percussionists should also bring:
- Black 1″ binder (with outside plastic sheet cover)
- 50+ sheet protectors
- Pencil Bag
- 2 mechanical pencils
- 5 dividers
- TonalEnergy (Metronome/tuner app)
- Earbuds (any cheap brand will do)
INCOMING PERCUSSION FRESHMAN MUST ALSO BRING:
- Marimba Mallets – Innovative Percussion IP240’s – 2 pairs
- Stick/mallet bag – Innovative Percussion Cordura Mallet Tour Bag MB-1
IF AUDITIONING FOR BATTERY, ALSO BRING:
- Practice pad – Offworld Invader V3 – Dark matter surface (Black or red)
***DO NOT ORDER GUM RUBBER OR VINYL PAD***
- Multi height practice pad stand – Lone Star percussion concert height snare practice pad stand
- Marching snare sticks – Innovative percussion FS-JC Jim Casella signature marching snare stick
This equipment is needed to create the best technique and establish correct muscle memory. These practice pads have a rim like a true marching/concert drum. The size of this pad (14″) enables it to fit snugly into the stand. Other pads are smaller and tend to tilt/move in the stands, making it impossible to drum correctly. Stands hold the pad at the correct height for the proper technique. Many kids will sit their practice pad on their lap or on a bed/chair which causes bad technique/hand position.
- Sneakers (no high tops or hiking boots)
- Sun block/sunscreen
- Bug repellent
School owned instruments WILL be available from the spring camps onwards, though the maintenance fee of $75.00 is not due until school starts in August. This fee is paid through your student account in the School’s cash on-line store. These instruments include;
- Bass Clarinet
- Tenor and Baritone Saxophone
- French Horn
- Euphonium and Marching Baritone
- Bass Trombone
*Schedules for Marching Band Camps are subject to change each year.**
Knox PAD Camp – MANDATORY
This is for all incoming freshmen percussionists focusing on fundamentals, and is usually held 2 days/week in April at Knox.
Percussion Experience PAD Camp – MANDATORY
This is for all current and incoming percussionists focusing on fundamentals, and is usually held 2 days/week in May at College Park.
New Member Camp – MANDATORY
This is a short 3-evening camp for all new & incoming 9th grade band students and all current 9/10/11 graders who will be continuing in band next school year. Usually held in May, this is a great introduction to marching for incoming students, and allows students to meet Directors and their new peers. It is a great reminder to work on conditioning before marching season!
Guard camp 1 – MANDATORY
This is a 1 week full day camp for all guard students, usually held in the first week of summer.
Guard camp 2 – MANDATORY
This is a 1 week full day camp for all guard students, usually held the week prior to summer band camp.
Percussion camp 1 – MANDATORY
This is a 1 week full day camp for all percussionists, usually held in the first week of summer.
Percussion camp 2 – MANDATORY
This is a 1 week full day camp for all percussionists, usually held the week prior to summer band camp.
4th July Parade – OPTIONAL
ALL band students in town are encouraged to attend a run through on July 3rd, and the 4th July parade. We are representing College Park High School in this large community event.
Summer Band Camp – MANDATORY
This is a 2-3 week camp for full band and guard, held towards the end July and goes into August, right before school starts. Masterclasses may also be incorporated into the schedule (at no additional cost). These are smaller group lessons, instructed by private lesson teachers, and are given by section. They provide valuable instruction to prepare for Region Band try-outs. Summer camp involves long hot days, some evenings and some Saturdays in August. Summer camp is required to be considered for a marching spot. No marching means no PE credit. For a sample summer band itinerary, see below (may vary year to year).
7:00am -11:00am – Outside rehearsal
11:00am -12:30pm – Lunch on your own
12:30pm -2:00pm – Masterclasses inside (all athletes unable to participate in marching band are expected to participate)
2:00pm – 5:00pm – Inside rehearsal
9:00am – 4:00pm – Masterclasses throughout the day on specified days. Only an hour and a half for each section and that will be determined by the schedule of the teacher. These times will be shared closer to camp starting.
5:00pm – 9:00pm – Outside rehearsal with a 15-20 minute break to eat something nutritious brought from home. Students will NOT be able to leave campus during this break.
*Often, summer band coincides with school orientations. Band students will have the opportunity to attend orientation, usually during their lunch break.
Look out for communications from school with updates concerning dates and times!
INTERCOM: “Football practice cancelled due to intense rain…… Marching Band practice extended due to sudden availability of field” Anonymous