Riders To March At Invite

ST. MARYS — A local marching band will be showcasing its skills at a statewide event.

The St. Marys All-Brass Marching Band will be performing at the 2011 Buckeye Invitational at Ohio Stadium at 3:30 p.m. today.

The event began at 9 a.m., and the day’s activities will end with a special performance by The Ohio State University Marching Band at 7:05 p.m.

St. Marys Band Director Dane Newlove noted the St. Marys All-Brass Band had to apply to be featured in the invitational.

“The philosophy behind the Buckeye Invitational is to showcase fine high school bands from across the state, and to give these bands the opportunity to march at Ohio Stadium,” Newlove said.

He noted there are 40 high school bands entered in the event, with eight, including St. Marys, that are entered in the festival class, meaning they are non-competition bands performing for entertainment only.

“Competition bands generally perform more difficult marching drills and music than football bands do,” Newlove said. “However, they also tend to focus primarily on just this single show and not perform different music throughout the season.”  

He noted competition bands can enter in four classifications, generally sorted by school size and not band size, ranging from Class AA for the largest schools, to Class C for the smallest schools.

Area bands performing as competition bands at the event include Liberty Benton, Kalida, Ada, Findlay, and Troy.

Several of Ohio’s largest marching bands will be present, such as Grove City, who marched at a recent Rose Bowl Parade, Lakota East, Beavercreek and Marysville.

 “This will be a great opportunity for our students to observe some of Ohio’s finest high school marching bands that we do not have an opportunity to see, and of course the special performance by TBDBITL,” Newlove said.

“Our students are excited for this performance.”

This is SMABB’s second performance at this event, the last in 1986. The event was not held for several years during the 1980s and 1990s because of considerations with the grass playing surface, and was revived several years ago. Newlove encouraged area residents to make the trip to Columbus today to hear their local band perform.

The band’s performance today is entitled “Something Old, Something New,” featuring a mixture of older and newer songs.  “We are opening with a song we performed in 1986 at the Buckeye Invitational entitled ‘On Broadway,’” Newlove said. “Our second selection is a medley of ‘December 1963’ and ‘Walk Like a Man’ from the musical ‘Jersey Boys.’ We will end up with the popular selection ‘All I Do Is Win.’ There is certainly something for nearly everyone’s musical tastes.”  

Tickets are available on the Ticketmaster website by searching for Buckeye Invitational and will be available the day of the event at Ohio Stadium.