21 bands to strut into Alachua for competition

The Eastside Rams marching band performs at halftime against the Belleview Rattlers last week.

Matt Stamey/Staff photographer
Published: Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 3:37 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 3:37 p.m.

Hundreds of high school musicians from around Florida will descend on Santa Fe High School for Saturday’s 17th Annual Southern Showcase of Champions Marching Band Invitational.


If you go

What: 17th annual Southern Showcase of Champions Marching Band Invitational

When: Saturday; performances begin at 10:30 a.m. Awards begin at 10 p.m.

Where: Santa Fe High School, 16213 NW U.S. 441, Alachua, 32615

Price: $10 per person, $5 for children younger than 5

The Raider Regiment, Santa Fe’s marching band, will host 21 bands for a day of judged performances that will end with awards for top scoring schools.

“It is a signature event at Santa Fe High School,” said Laurie Brown, publicity director for the event.

The regional event is one of the competitions required to qualify for the Florida Marching Band state finals, to be held in St. Petersburg on Nov. 17.

Nathan Bisco, Santa Fe band director, said between the bands and spectators, up to 2,000 people fill the campus for the event.

“It’s a pretty sought-after competition to attend,” he said.

Marching bands from Buchholz, Eastside, Newberry and Gainesville will compete Saturday. Members of Santa Fe’s band will spend the day working the event before putting on a exhibition performance near the end of the evening.

Brown said an event so large can be a challenge.

“It’s quite a technical feat when you have 21 different bands from around the state,” she said.

Jermaine Reynolds, band director at Newberry, said his students were excited at practice this week.

The Newberry Marching Band of Pride is coming off an impressive finish at the Central Florida Marching Arts Invitational in Leesburg, where the band finished second overall among 21 bands in its first time participating in that competition.

“I was speechless,” Reynolds said.

Saturday’s competition will also features vendors and concessions. The cost is $10 per person and $5 for children younger than 5.

Contact Joey Flechas at 338-3166 or joey.flechas@gvillsun.com.

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