Annual band competition fundraiser set for Saturday
All year long, the players have been practicing, honing their skills as they prepare to take center stage.
That happens on Saturday as 21 high school marching bands will compete at the Crystal Coast Band Classic at Havelock High School.
“For most of the bands, it’s their last performance of the year,” said Jorge Benitez, the band director at Havelock High. “You’re going to see them at their best.”
The event serves as a fundraiser for the Havelock High band and music program.
“All the money we raise goes to our operating costs,” Benitez said. “We use it to purchase equipment, pay staff, buy music, repair our trailers, buy tires. We spend anywhere from $35,000 to $45,000 a year.”
Admission to the event is $8, which includes a souvenir program. Event shirts, souvenirs and concessions will be available for purchase.
The competition includes a preliminary round in which all bands perform starting at 10:30 a.m., and the finals with the top eight bands scheduled to begin at 8 p.m.
Some of the area bands scheduled to compete include New Bern High, White Oak, defending grand champion West Carteret, West Craven, Swansboro, Southwest Onslow, Dixon, Northside and East Carteret.
As the host band, Havelock will not be competing but will put on an exhibition performance at 5:12 p.m.
“Our show is called InspiRED. We have a lot of red in the show,” Benitez said. “It’s a Latin show that’s pretty fun and entertaining.”
And as if the high school bands aren’t enough, the event also features exhibition performances by the East Carolina University Marching Pirates at 5:28 p.m. and 10:28 p.m.
“The kids are so excited to see the bands that they see on TV and at the college football games,” Benitez said. “It’s larger than life.”
In essence, the competition is one-stop shopping for the music lover who can see all the bands perform halftime shoes in one spot.
“It’s a chance to see what a lot of the bands are doing,” Benitez said. “It’s a pretty good way to see everyone.”
Trophy sponsorships are still available and volunteers are welcome.
For more information, call Havelock High School at 444-5112 or go online to www.havelockband.com/cc-band-classic.