The UW La Crosse Marching Band, the Screaming Eagles, will be tirelessly practicing this week as part of their annual "Band Camp". Over the next week, band members will practice 13 hours a day to prepare for the new school year.
"By the end of the day we want to just go home and either sit and talk with people or just go straight to bed," said Ali Weber, student assistant conductor for the Screaming Eagles. "Always looking forward to the next day, but definitely need a good night's sleep"
During Band Camp, the marching band will practice a handful of new routines as well as old favorites. The strenuous schedule is nothing new to returning members, but Weber said with so much going on, even the freshmen adjust quickly.
"There are some people who might be a little homesick," said Weber. "But, I mean, there's so much to do, and so little time to do it in, that you don't have a lot of time to think about anything else."
Besides the immense workload and long hours, band members will have to cope with midday temperatures in the 90s this week.
"It looks like this week weather could be an issue, just with the heat," said Tammy Fisher, UW-La Crosse Marching Band Director. "And I was hoping it would stay down a little lower, but we'll give them lots of water, and lots of breaks. But we'll manage. Can't stop just because it's hot!"
Each year brings new challenges for the marching band. But Fisher said each year it's worth it.
"Just their enthusiasm, their energy to perform and entertain people," said Fisher. "It's always refreshing to see. Because they work hard and they do such a great job."
The first UW-La Crosse home football game isn't until October. The band will spend the month of September playing at parades and other community events. After this week, band members will practice on a bi-weekly basis.
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