Nebraska Bands Take Alamo Bowl by Storm
The Hershey High School Panther Pride Marching Band was one of 14 bands from around the country to travel to San Antonio, Texas to participate in the halftime show at the Alamo Bowl Game between the Texas Longhorns and the Oregon Ducks. Bands from as far away as New Jersey and Maryland made the trip as well as more local bands from Kansas, Colorado, Illinois, and Texas.
The trip for the Hershey Panthers began at 7:00 PM on December 26th as they loaded onto to charter bus to begin the 18 hour trip to San Antonio. Upon arrival in San Antonio, the first stop was Six Flags Fiesta, where the students had several hours to relax and enjoy the rides and amusements.
The very next day the competitions between the bands began. The Panther Pride Band competed in the Parade Review where the bands were grouped by size. The 6 bands in Hershey’s class included 2 from Kansas, 2 from Colorado, 1 from Texas, and the smallest band at the competition, Hershey, Nebraska. The Hershey Panther Pride Marching Band won 1st place in music, 1st place drumline and 1st place overall in the parade competition! The only other band from Nebraska was the 150 member band from Papillion-LaVista. The Papillion band won the field show competition for their class and had the honor of performing their field show during pre-game of the Alamo Bowl.
The afternoon of the 28th the Hershey band was selected to perform at the Alamo Bowl pep rally at the Arneson Theater on the Riverwalk. It was an exciting atmosphere with not only hundreds of Texas and Oregon fans, but tourists from all over the country passing by in River Boats and taking photos of the Hershey Band!
Sunday morning the 14 bands that had competed against each other the day before became one band of over 1400 musicians. When the color guard and dancers were added in there were 2000 students on the field!
Monday, on game day, the mass band had a final rehearsal in the Alamo Dome and then it was show time! The mass band performed first at halftime of the football game in front of 65,000 fans, followed by performances by the Oregon Marching Band and the Texas Longhorn Marching Band. After the game it was back on the bus for the Hershey Band’s 18 hour ride back to Nebraska with memories that will last a lifetime.
The students are grateful to the many people who helped fund and organize their trip. A special thank you to the John Applegate Fund for the grant that also assisted with the cost of the trip.