Proud of the Pride

Marching band places 2nd at Armuchee Invitational


Katie Linkner

Panther Pride marching band member performs the “Fire and Ice” show.” Last weekend the Starr’s Mill marching band competed in the Armuchee Invitational and placed second overall.

James Hindy, Staff Writer

This past Saturday, Starr’s Mill’s Panther Pride placed second overall in its first marching band competition of the year. The band performed their eight-minute performance at Armuchee High School in front of eight different judges, earning the runner-up trophy overall and several individual awards.

“This years show is very technical, it features all of the instruments in their own way and shows everyone’s talent,” drum major junior Kennedy blanks said. “I think it shows what we can do.”

The Panther Pride, coming from a AAAAA school, performed in the Open Class portion of the 11th annual Armuchee Invitational. Of the four possible categories a band could receive recognition — drum major, colorguard, percussion, and overall band rank — Starr’s Mill was the only school besides Lambert to place in all four categories.

Awards included:

  • Drum major: first place – Starr’s Mill, second place – Ridgeland High School, third place – Lambert High School
  • Colorguard: first place – Ringgold High School, second place – Starr’s Mill, third place – Lambert High School
  • Percussion: first place – Lambert High School, second place – Ringgold High School, third place – Starr’s Mill
  • Overall band rank: first place – Ringgold High School, second place – Starr’s Mill, third place – Lambert High School

“We have a dance section in the second movement of our show, and it’s something we’ve never really done before,” Blanks said.”It’s definitely different than what we have done in the past.” While new additions to the style of the Pride’s show can be exciting for marchers and spectators alike, preparing for a show as challenging as “Fire and Ice” can be difficult.

According to senior Madison Corkill, a trumpet soloist in the performance, the most challenging part of the “Fire and Ice” show are the drills and movements the marchers must do to stay organized and keep formation. “A lot of people have been having a hard time with them because it’s so fast,” Corkill said.

While the band placed second overall, band captain Zach Garcia sees some room for enhancements in the show. “I personally think the band could improve on our focus and determination when it comes to performing,” Garcia said. “A lot of times many marchers just go through the motions and do not give it their all in every performance. If people can learn to be 100% committed and motivated, then I believe we would see a huge growth in our band’s ability as well as individual talent and accomplishments.”

The next marching band competition for the Pride takes place on Oct. 20 at Jacksonville State University.