• September 14, 2019

OHS band sets Band Olympics - Odessa American: ECISD

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OHS band sets Band Olympics

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Posted: Friday, August 16, 2019 11:57 am

As a way to promote bonding and celebrate the end of summer band camp, the Odessa High School Band will have its seventh annual Band Olympics this weekend.

The festivities run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at the Boys & Girls Club Wilkerson Unit, 800 E. 13th St.

“All the sections in the band compete against each other in fun games … They’ll get dirty; they’ll get wet; and it’s just to celebrate the end of summer band and also to build camaraderie within the kids’ sections. … A lot of freshmen show up and they don’t know anybody but their own little group (from) the middle schools that they came from. This is a way that they can start getting to know the people that play their same instrument, then branch out and feel welcome in this band,” Associate Director of Bands Jimmy Olague said.

There are 13 band sections involved and about 220 students usually participate.

“The only thing they know is that they all have to make a section flag that gets voted on on Saturday. They all come up with a chant for their section, as well. They introduce that on Saturday as well and they get points for that. Then we start with the games. All this week is theme day, so every day there’s a certain theme and the kids all vote on whatever the theme is at the end of rehearsal each night. And each section’s just trying to make points before the actual relays and stuff start,” Olague added.

The students are warned that they will get dirty and wet, Olague said.

“We have, I think it’s a 3-foot tall trophy. We put the section’s name on there and they get bragging rights for a year. They get their picture taken with the trophy and some of them get to take it home. Then they bring it back,” he said.

Olague went to Texas Tech University and they had something similar then.

“So I decided to bring it (here). The year I started … the summer Olympics were happening so I said you know what I need to bring the band Olympics too …,” he added.

Senior baritone player Melissa Ortiz has participated in Band Olympics before.

“I think it’s really fun to for the whole band to get closer,” Ortiz said.

She added that they don’t practice before hand.

“We just go and then they have water slides and (they) have games there for us. We just compete with other sections there,” Ortiz said.

She added that she doesn’t think they’re going to win.

“Even though you don’t win, it’s still fun. You tried at least,” Ortiz said.

Senior Maddie Olague, a 17-year-old senior who is in percussion, and Juan Carlos Luna, a 16-year-old junior who part of the drumline, agree that it’s a bonding experience.

“… There’s a competitive side in everyone. We have to work together most of the year. We have a chance to see who is actually the better section,” Olague said.

Olague said she feels her section has the mindset to win.

“I think all of us seniors who have been on the line for three-plus years, or two-plus years we’ve gotten second every year so we’re going to win. It’s going to happen,” she said.

Odessa, TX

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