Updated: Jul 2, 2020
Everyone has skills. Everyone has talents. Everyone has a desire to make their children happy. (I mean, mostly. Right?)
Anywho, if happiness comes in the form of the marching band, then we must all pitch in to make every season great.
This is part of a series giving details on how the parents, guardians, family, and friends of the marvelous marchers of the Spirit of Woodlan can support the band.
When the registration form arrives at the beginning of the season, and you stare at the "Band Booster Committee" page, there could be some serious WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO thoughts. But have no fear. We're all in this together.
And we have a pretty darn good time.
Let's talk decorating!
First...the band room.
Each year we get a new show. And each year people transform the band room into a wondrous place with streamers and posters and whatever they can think of to go with the theme of the show. Thursday evenings before a competition, these creative souls meet in the band room around 6 and add a little more to the room, all leading up to state finals.
I helped the last two years and will be there this fall. One or two people come up with an overall vision for the back wall, leaving the other walls and upstairs railing free for anyone to add their own touches. As people come to help, we fill them in on what we're doing and brainstorm ideas for future additions. You can always help someone implement their idea, or offer your own. I would stare at a wall and say, "Hey, I have an idea for this space!" I'd let everyone know, and if no one objected, I'd do it. And it's fun to have someone call and ask you to draw a five foot long witch. Though not all ideas go smoothly, so it's good to have people around to help, to offer suggestions, or simply hold things. I found that as the weeks went by, I would have more and more ideas, and never had trouble filling the space.
Band room images from the 2018 show The Witching Hour and the 2019 show A Thousand Cranes (we really did hang one thousand origami cranes, though we DID NOT fold them).
But why fill it?
The marching band works hard, playing the same music, doing the same drill. So having their room change as they get better and better helps keep them focused and excited. WHAT WILL BE IN THE BAND ROOM THIS WEEK WE HAVE TO GO SEE! I have seen their faces go from tired to smiling when they take in what has been added. And we promise special things if they go to state. Like a giant origami crane covered in glitter. Or a Mr. Slattery faerie.
Note giant crane...Yes, that's glitter..................................and a Mr. Slattery faerie...it was a big hit.
This is all about adding you to the band. Every band supporter (parent, family, friend) gets their chance to do what they can. So as the volunteers come and go, the look of the decorations change, the way things happen change. It's constantly evolving, so go do what you can do, take a moment to be apart of this short, but powerful time in the lives of the marching band students.
Most important...we have a really good time. It's a hoot. We run with scissors. We leave glitter all over the floor. We laugh and throw rolls of tape. And let's not even talk about the safety pins. But at the end of the season, we have celebrated the band's hard work and brought the theme to life.
Do you like glitter?
Do you like to color?
Do you like glue?
Do you have a knack for thinking up fun, inspirational phrases?
Do you like to tape things to lockers?
Then come join the locker decorators!
Nicole and I took over the locker decorations two shows ago with the Witching Hour and had a blast, then had a crane-tastic time last year.
Locker decorations start with a list of students that Mr. Slattery will be happy to provide. You take that to the school office and say, "Hi! I need locker numbers for the band students so I can decorate their lockers!" Leave the list, I typed up the list with a bit more space for them to write the numbers, and in a few days the list with numbers added will be sent home with your child.
Locker decorations go up the Thursday before competitions. As soon as classes are finished, I head into the school...I like to go in by the band room...give everyone a second to vacate the halls, then with my bag of colorful papers and a roll of blue painters tape (yes, specifically that for the lockers) I went up and down the halls. I checked names and numbers and stuck the things on. Sometimes we put names on them, sometimes not. Sometimes the band members will take theirs down each week ( to keep it safe, is what my daughter told me) and others leave them all up, so finding room by the end of the season gets tricky, but we always make it work. With just me, it took about 45 minutes to hang all 60-something...and don't forget to hang one on the band room door!
Note: It is possible that a few band members will not attend Woodlan. I usually found them and handed them a decoration so they could take it with them and hang it on their locker where ever they went to school.
Each week, Nicole and I would think up a fun phrase and an image to go with it, then MADE THEM GLITTER AND SHINE! We did get carried away with the glitter...we admit it. And we had a great time getting the picture and saying to tie in with that year's theme. With the two of us, we split the number and made about thirty each, so depending on the number of band members, that could change. Including state finals, there's usually eight competitions...so eight weeks of making and hanging our creations on lockers, though the eight weeks are not all in a row.
Because this will be my last year, if you have any interest, I need an apprentice! I shall pass on my knowledge, so Nicole will not be alone the year after. And with three of us, it will go super fast.
The band loves their locker decorations. My daughter has her favorites from all her years on her bedroom wall. These make their lockers stand out, saying HEY YOU ARE SUPER IMPORTANT AND EVERYONE WILL KNOW JUST HOW AWESOME THE BAND IS! Because sometimes, believe it or not, the band gets overlooked.
Again. This is a place where you can bring you. Locker decorations change as the parents doing them move in and move out. These musicians appreciate all the work we do. From simple to complicated, locker decorations can be anything! All they have to do is let that person know that we are cheering them on! This is the best thing to keep them going through the season.
So...*shakes bottle of glitter glue*...anyone? Become a CHAMPION OF GLITTER. ( A COG?)