Band camp provides a week full of events, planned and unplanned
The Winfield Marching Generals left for band camp on Aug. 2. We spent an amazing week at Camp Ceaser in rural Webster County.
When we left, we had no idea of how eventful the week would be. The whole band agreed there was nothing extraordinary about our group of individuals. However, when we started plotting our charts for this year's show, we were proved wrong. The field show came together with remarkable speed for a high school-level band.
On Monday, we continued our impressive rate of progress while we finished plotting the field show that morning. We took a break from the field plotting to work on the music for several hours. After some freetime and dinner, we resumed practice until bedtime.
On Tuesday, we started having problems with the field show. One member of the band had quit just before we left for camp. This caused uneven spacing in many of our charts, setting us back a bit in our progress. However, we got lucky when someone wanting to join the band called, filling the hole that had been causing us problems.
After finishing our practice, we enjoyed more freetime and played softball. One of my pals, Carlton Harington, said the game was "intense." James Marino described it as intense as well.
"The game kept flipping back and forth," he said. "One second you'd be winning, then the next second the other team was in the lead."
On Wednesday, our new band member arrived. She was pretty cool. Almost instantly she became friends with many of the other members. Other then some slight difficulties, we fit her into the forms with ease.
We also started adding music to our marching on Wednesday. Usually, the first few times a band does this, it ends up a catastrophe, but we managed to get a better grip on it than we expected. Our director, Mr. Geary Jack, seemed quite pleased with the way camp was going and said, "This is the most talented group I've seen in all my years of marching."
On Thursday, one of my friends left band camp due to family issues. Everyone was so depressed that Mr. Jack canceled practice for that morning. We didn't resume until the evening. After our practice, we had a talent show.
The talent show was a pleasant break from the day's events. The acts included a group of three singers, a xylophone exhibition and singing act I performed. The overall winner of the night was Ashley Penny, who did a phenomenal vocalization.
On Friday, we had to work twice as hard as any other day. We had to make up for our lack of work on the previous day. All day we pushed the clock to get everything done. We managed to finish everything through great effort. After evening practice, we had a dance scheduled.
I went back to the cabin to get ready. Five minutes later, I heard shouts and found I was the only person in my cabin, and there were bears outside. I kept calm, even though I was a little nervous. Somehow, a freshman guy who didn't know about the bear wandered into the cabin. As soon as he learned what was going on, he was scared out his wits.
We stayed trapped inside for about 45 minutes until we were joined by camp counselor Chris Itson. He led us out of the cabin, where we were met by a lot of our friends that said they had spotted another bear in another area of the camp. Mr. Jack told them to return to their cabins until the coast was clear.
We hung out in the cabins until we heard yet another bear had been sighted. Everyone gathered in one building in the center of the camp.
Finally, after a long night, we went to sleep for a couple of hours before leaving in the morning. We arrived back at Winfield High School at approximately 1 p.m. on Aug. 8. Everyone was happy to be home.
Zack Posey is a member of the Winfield High School Marching Generals and a periodic contributor to the Putnam Herald.