The season ended last night (OMEA State Marching Band Finals at Brunswick HS). The band was outstanding. They played and marched with energy and confidence. They were a team, all determined to achieve a higher level of success than any of their previous efforts. And they did.
Standing on the track during their performance (pacing, actually, because I get too nervous to stand still), I could feel the "it" factor coming from the band. What is "it"? I can't specifically say, but it's the aura that radiates from a group when everyone shares the same drive to excel beyond expectations. A shared trust, maybe a synergy, that everyone is out there giving their all to the next eight minutes. A factor that is hard to define but you just know it when you experience it.
So, a season that began last July 21st, and even earlier for the auxiliary and the percussion, comes to an end some 15 or 16 weeks later. It's a long season. There are highs and lows. There are exhausting rehearsals and joyous performances. Many life lessons learned along the way. Some members growing into strong leaders. Many learning how to be good team players and understanding sacrifice for the greater good.
It's a cast of roughly 124 band members and twelve 8th grade helpers, plus a group of dedicated teachers and instructors, and legions of parents and supporters. All focused on making the Avon Lake marching band experience the best experience ever. I am thankful for this beautiful collection of people. I have respect for their talents and I am humbled by their endless devotion of time, and energy, and love, for what we do.