What is band camp? Band camp is typically referred to as a high school, college or university marching band summer camp. But for the Lake Nona High school “Sound of The Lions” band members, it so much more.
Band camp starts at the end of July with Leadership Camp. Student leaders attend Leadership Camp, which is designed to teach them about peer teaching and leadership skills that will prepare them for their roles in the band program. They also set goals for the year and participate in teambuilding exercises. After two days of this camp, the band welcomes in the new members and freshmen for another two days of training. They spend this time working intensively with the leadership team to learn marching and playing fundamentals for high school.
The second week of band camp includes all band students. This is where the fun begins! The days are long, but the friendships made last forever. During band camp, the students start their day outside learning marching fundamentals and the new halftime show. After enjoying a healthy catered lunch, they move inside for music and section rehearsals. Dinner also is catered, after which the students go back outside to continue working on the marching portion of their show.
To promote teambuilding and positive morale, the band holds a friendly competition between sections called “Band Camp Olympics.” Each day, teams earn points through a different outside competitive game. The highlight of these games is the frozen t-shirt contest during which each team selects one student representative who has to try and undo a wet t-shirt that has been frozen and put it on their body to win. It is the most hilarious game you will ever see! Students also can earn points for their team through individual recognition from the band staff called “Random Acts of Awesome” and through the student leadership team by being recognized as either the Vet or Rookie of the Day. Not only do we have the most amazing band director at Lake Nona High School, we also have a band camp staff that comes from all over the state of Florida to share their expertise with our students.
In my opinion, the best part of band and band camp are the parent volunteers. They are moms and dads who come and provide students with everything they need to be successful. We set up “comfort tents” and provide the students with snacks and drinks to keep them hydrated and their stomachs full. If you ask the students, I think they would say the popsicles are the best part of band camp. Parent volunteers are also there for each Friday night game (home and away) taking care of the students as if they were their own. The students are very grateful for our amazing band parents. Not only are the students creating new friendships, but the group of dedicated parents also are creating new friendships.
This fall, please come out and watch the Lake Nona High School “Sound of The Lions” Marching Band perform their halftime show “Abbey Road,” featuring music of the Beatles. You will not be disappointed. These band students put on an amazing halftime show!