The Bath County High School Marching Band Achieves A Milestone

Warm Springs, VA – This fall the Bath County High School Marching Band did something it’s never done before. The band won its first ever grand championship at the “Blast in the Draft” competition in Stuarts Draft, Virginia. The band won that top prize over thirteen other bands and also won first place in all categories: drum line, color guard, music, drum major, marching and general effects. Melanie is a senior band captain and plays the alto saxophone.

“Oh it was amazing,” says Melanie. “Especially being able to stand up there and go up and accept the award for the band. And having it be my senior year it was an amazing experience and a great way to leave the band, having that grand championship. The band is my family and I love them all.”

Elijah is a band captain and plays trumpet.

“It was exhilarating,” says Elijah. “I felt really excited for the band as a whole. I mean we really needed that booster, especially with the things that came to pass the next couple weeks. Well I think we went in thinking we were the best and we came out as the best. So it was definitely all about the mindset.”

Tanner is a junior band captain and plays tenor saxophone

“We put in a lot of hard work at band camp and we busted our tails and everything during our 6 to 8 practices and all that,” says Tanner. “And I guess after that much practice and stuff we got to the point where we we’d be able to come out on top and we just went in and did it. Once you’re in band you’re a family and you can’t take that away from each other.”

Mariah is color guard captain.

“It’s pretty exciting,” says Mariah. “Guard is amazing and guard did good and we got first place and the band is just amazing too. I think Guard just stepped it up and they just like Oh it’s a competition, so let’s get our act together’ and just put it all, bring it all.”

Kara is co-captain in the color guard.

“I feel like since the death of Joey and everyone tried to pull together and do it and make everyone proud,” says Kara. “It’s so much fun. I just feel like if I didn’t do it, I don’t know what I’d do. I’m just proud of the Charger band.”

Shortly after the big win at the “Blast in the Draft” competition, the band competed in the Lynchburg Classic. There the band placed third overall out of 22 bands. And the band won first place, overall, drum line, first place, Drum Major and second place color guard.

Band Director Melinda Hooker has been at Bath County High School for 16 years.

“This band is a true family,” says Hooker. “On the day of the last competition we had a student that passed away at this school. And these kids banded together and they got together before we went and they said prayers and they were there for each other. And they decided, you know what, the best thing for us to do is be together. And to see these kids hold each other up, to see them lean on each other and the school has been behind us. It’s been just really exciting to see the family that this band has become.”

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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