AND THE bands played on.......
That was no easy task Saturday at Martins Ferry's Purple Rider Stadium. The OVAC's fourth annual Band Showcase overcame a nasty dose of Mother Nature to put on another display of virtuoso musical performances.
Despite rain, cold weather and blustery conditions some 1,000 students encompassing 15 OVAC schools entertained weather-beleaguered spectators for more than four hours.
The sub-par conditions failed to dampen the enthusiasm and talents of the prep band members. Each school was given 12 minutes for their respective show.
The high school bands were followed by a rousing performance delivered by the West Liberty University band. The Hilltopper band also delivered the national anthem to kick off the festivities.
The stirring grand finale featured all the bands taking the field together. It was the seamless meshing of a group of very talented and focused students.
The OVAC Band Showcase provides a forum for band members to demonstrate their melodic skills. All too often, prep bands are limited to a brief football halftime segment.
The showcase brings bands to the forefront. A reward for all their hard work, commitment and dedication.
It is a non-competitive event. Rather, bands perform for the sheer love of entertaining with no pressure to best the other schools.
One bonus of the event is that proceeds from the showcase support the McDonald's OVAC All-Star Band, which appears at the OVAC All-Star football game each year.
Kudos go out to Showcase Coordinator Benjamin McPherson, committee members Amanda McPherson, Justin Schwertfeger and Julia Wayne. We also applaud OVAC Executive Secretary Tom Rataiczak and Martins Ferry Athletic Director Kim Appolloni for their tireless work in making a musical smorgasbord become a reality.