Malta Bend Tiger Band wins first in competition; eyes Liberty Bowl
The Tiger Pride Band of Malta Bend High School earned first place in a major marching band competition at Missouri State University in Springfield on Saturday, Oct. 29.
The band competed in the class A parade band competition during the highly competitive Missouri State University Homecoming Parade.
At halftime of the MSU vs. Southern Illinois football game drum major Ashleigh Thomas and color guard captain Yvonne Grinstead represented the band on the football field as trophies were awarded.
As the band listened to the announcer read off the list of winning bands, some band members feared that they hadn't placed at all, but then it was announced that they had won first place.
"I thought we got last," band member Brenda Kirby said. "I was really surprised when we got first."
Some of the band members were surprised at the first-place finish because the full band was not able to make the trip to Springfield.
"I don't know how we won; we were missing about 10 people." said Dillon Edde, a freshman member of the band. "We really stepped up."
Eighth grade band member Kayla Eskew said that before the event in Springfield some of the band members were thinking that maybe they wouldn't go on the band's big trip to the Liberty Bowl in Memphis. But, Eskew said, the win has raised the spirits of her band mates.
"Since we won first place," Eskew said, "we've got more confidence."
Band Director James Duncan was very pleased with his band's performance.
"It was absolutely the best performance the band has given in my two years here. I was very pleased and am so proud of the band," Duncan said.
Duncan and the band members continue to work at raising money for the Liberty Bowl trip in December.
"We're still working hard to raise the last $2,500," Duncan said. "We are hoping that some other businesses in the area will step up and help us get over the top. We would very much like to replace our aging front banner in time for the Liberty Bowl but right now our major concern is getting the funds for the trip locked down," Duncan said, adding that a new custom front banner would cost around $800.
"We're into crunch time for finishing up the funding for the trip. We have to be paid in full by November 15th," Duncan said.
The band is currently selling gift items through QSP as well as raffle tickets for a pair of tickets to the Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens football game. Chances to win the Chiefs tickets are available for two dollars each and may be purchased from band members, through the Malta Bend school office, or at The Waggin Wheel in Malta Bend. The drawing will take place on Wednesday, Dec. 6, at 12:01 p.m. at the Malta Bend High School. The winner does not need to be present to win.
The Tiger Pride Band's next performances will be an appearance on the Marshall square on Nov. 11 to provide ceremonial music for the Veterans Day observance, marching in the Marshall Christmas Parade Dec. 1, and a Christmas 'send-off' concert at the Malta Bend High School on Dec. 21.
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