Marching Knights named Grand Champions
Sirens filled the quiet countryside on State Route 18 on Saturday night as a special escort led the Tyler Consolidated High School Silver Knight Marching Band home, bringing with them accolades from their most recent competition.
The Marching Knights received the top honor of Grand Champion at the 2009 Sissonville Band Invitational held on Oct. 3.
“We were all so excited, it was such a great day,” said Band Director Wayne Smith. “These kids work so hard every day, and it always shows when we’re at a competition or show. I could not be more proud of them. And the escort was a real surprise. We’ve never had that before. We thoroughly enjoyed it.”
The Knights competed in the top division (Class A) against Nitro, Parkersburg South, Winfield, and Poca High Schools. Other schools competing were: Ritchie County, Lincoln County, Buffalo Wayne, James Monroe, Shady Springs, and Logan County.
The Knight band received the following awards: Outstanding General Effect First place (Class A); Outstanding Visual Effect Second place (Class A); Best Show Design Second place overall; Outstanding Drum Major First place (Class A) Christine Keplinger; Outstanding Soloists (Class A) Andrew VanCamp and Amanda Goodfellow; Class A Champion and Grand Champion
The bands were judged at this competition by seven different judges and in seven different areas, and found to be the best on this particular day. “And the awards were fantastic,” Smith said. “They even gave each individual member of the band grand champion medallions to wear, and they all wore them to school on Monday.”
Members of the Silver Knight Marching Band are as follows: Christine Keplinger (Field Commander), Jordan Palmer and Rusty Lemasters (Drum Captains), Andrew VanCamp and Amanda Goodfellow (Trumpet Soloists), Shelby Billings, Kathy Bolen, Deidra Boor, Ashley Bungard, Jessica Campbell, Amber Eddy, Shannon Forrester, Roni Kruse, Adriane Rine, Mara Greathouse, Sarah Mays, Emily McNeese, Ashley Watson, Riley Housel, Stephanie Kelley, Nicholas Morris, Kaitlyn Neff, Joey Wilcox, Zack Pelikan, Cody Eddy, Daniel Grimm, KaraLoraye Huff, Martina Parrish, Carl Stewart. Lucas Houle, Alissa Taylor, Hannah West, Charlie Hamilton, Nicholas Orr, Chad Brightwell, Grace Rine, Dana Camerlin, Brandon Collins, Noah Garrison, Evan Grover, Hathy Hicks, Daniel Howell, Timothy Johnson, Donald Mays, and Tyler Blizzard (manager).
Directors of the band are Wayne Smith and assistant Sally Conklin. The band camp staff includes Cindy Smith and Matt Jennings and the support staff is Rusty Keplinger, Barb Palmer, Todd Palmer, Martin Parrish and Rosemary Haught.
The band was not without their support while at the competition either as Smith said the band could hear their hometown crowd as soon as they marched into the stadium on Saturday. “I really don’t know exactly how many were there,” he said, “But there they were all decked out in their Knight shirts and colors, yelling and making noise. We heard them before we saw them.”
Superintendent Jeff Hoover said the entire county has reason to be proud of the band. “This is quite an accomplishment for these kids, we’re all so proud and excited for them, as well as for Wayne Smith.”
“You would think that after all these years of competition, it would be old hat to him, but I don’t know who was more excited, him or the kids!”
The Silver Knight Marching Band will be participating in the Black Walnut Festival in Spencer WV on Oct. 10, and in the Vikingfest in Ripley, WV on Oct. 17.