The very first practice together was the most intimidating experience I have ever had. A group of freshman, including myself, were waiting in the Chorus room and then it was time. We walked into the double doors and the whole West Haven High School band was standing up and clapping. I thought to myself, "Why are they clapping?" After everyone was seated, our director, Mr. Crabtree said, "This is your family for the next four years." It wasn't until my senior year in high school that I found out how much that really meant.

I've been in band for seven years now and I've enjoyed every minute of it. The band director now, Ms. Marcella, says, "This is YOUR band, get involved!" because there is just so many things to get involved with. I thought that band just during school was exciting, but there was so much more to that. There is Band Council, Ensembles, Pep Band, Jazz Band, Leadership Positions, local performances, and much more I had missed out on during my freshman and sophomore year. In my junior year I joined Band Council, Clarinet Ensemble, and ran for Field Leader and Office Assistant for the Leadership Team.

I did not receive the position of Field Leader, but did receive the position of Office Assistant. I was very grateful for this position because in order to try out for this position, I had to attend 5 meetings, write an essay on why I wanted these positions, and make a 3 minute marching performance. Office Assistant means that I have responsibility to ensure all music in use is fully stocked at all times, fill music orders 24 hours of submission, spend at least one day a week after school or during a free period working in the Band Library, assist Section Leaders in handing out music, work to keep the rooms clean and keep rehearsals productive, and in my opinion, the most important responsibility, is to set an example for the Band to follow. There are 200 members in the band and once someone sees someone joking around and not follow the rules, others will follow. The most important thing to me is band. I get to meet new people, help the band achieve a great performance in each one we perform, and have a great time even when things get rough.

We are a group where we are together so much we might go crazy, but when things get out of hand, we pull together and make things turn out better than before. I never knew of a group so dedicated and hard working than the band, and I am very proud of being a part of it.