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A Banquet to Celebrate the Season

On Sunday, November 14th, the Spirit of Woodlan band and guard, along with their families, met to celebrate the season. As with all things marching band, parents have been hard at work for weeks getting everything ready for the banquet, and it was a lovely night. The evening began at 6:30pm with a welcome by Sarah Gunder, band booster president, followed by a prayer for the meal, led by Ed Stuckey. The senior members were then first in line to help themselves to an Italian dinner, including salad, two different pasta dishes, and breadsticks from Ziano's. Pictures from the season played on a slideshow throughout the evening. After dinner, cake was served that represented the marching band uniform and hat.

The program began at 7:30pm with an introduction by Sarah Gunder, followed by Senior Speakers Joe Jungk and Jesse Campbell. Both speakers gave testimony to their years in marching band, highlighting the friendships they have enjoyed along the way. Both talked about how much marching band has meant to them, and how grateful they were for the experience.

Senior Joe Jungk

Senior Jesse Campbell

After the Senior Speakers, Senior Parent Speakers Nicole Metzger, John Crilly, and Troy Gunder gave moving speeches about what a wonderful experience band has been for not only their children, but for them as well. The speeches mentioned that marching band is a LOT of hard work for the students, staff, and the parents. It requires so much involvement from the entire band community to have a successful season. While all the hard work CAN be a major pain, these parents also discussed how special and rewarding it can be, and how all the hard work is worth it. John Crilly mentioned all the parents that have done so much for the band, even years after their own children had graduated. He pointed out that they were not just FANS of marching band, they were FAMILY. All the speakers discussed how very special the marching band FAMILY is, and how honored they were to be a part of it. Their speeches were heartfelt and brought the tears for many (including me!).

Nicole Metzger

John Crilly

Troy Gunder

After the speeches, the senior members of the Spirit of Woodlan were honored with Recognition and Special Awards. Here is the list of awards:

Most Likely to Become a Spirit of Woodlan Groupie: Jesse Campbell

Most Likely to Ebay Their Instrument: Joe Jungk

Funniest Band Kid: Torin Bastaich

Most likely To Forget They Were in Marching Band: Allison Hearne

Quietest Band Kid: Trinity Leininger

Most Likely to Be the Runner Up in the Following Categories: Hottest in Uniform, Most Likely to Arrive Late, Most Likely to Become a Spirit of Woodlan Groupie: Michael Crilly

Hottest in Uniform and Most Likely to Arrive Early: Brock Fuller

Most Likely to Arrive Late: Ed Stuckey

Most Diabolical Section Leader: Brendan Maska

After Senior Awards, Sarah Gunder took time to recognize the MANY volunteers that help make the band so successful. Mr. Slattery shared some words of thanks and praise for all the band members, staff, and parents. He took a moment to share special thanks and praise for Sarah Gunder, who has been an immeasurable help to him (and everyone) over the last 8 years. She thinks she's retiring this year, but we have more plans for her, LOL.

The band banquet was a lovely evening and a great way to celebrate the close of another successful season. The students were all excited to save their Spirit of Woodlan placemats and paddles. I heard several kids mention that they would be adding those to the walls of their bedrooms, alongside their previous seasons collection. At our home, Bella came home and hung her first paddle and placemat on her wall, hoping to have a couple more to add to her collection in the next few years. It seemed the perfect way to put the finishing touches on an incredible season with an INCREDIBLE BAND FAMILY. I know that the memories these kids made together this season will last a lifetime.

Sooo... marching band is done for the year. Time to sit back and relax and take a break, right? Well, for maybe just a couple weeks! Cody Groves and his crew have been hard at work preparing for an exciting Winter Percussion and Guard season ahead... and I hear practices start in just a few weeks. There is a lot of buzz and excitement this year for Winter Percussion, and I know Cody has some exciting things in store! I plan to continue this blog to shine the light on their season ahead as well, so.... stay tuned!!!

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