Two Lake County high school marching bands take to the field Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis to compete in the 40th Indiana State School Music Association state finals.
Lake Central High School’s marching band, known as The Tribe of Pride, will complete in the Class A contest against other bands from schools with enrollments of 1,811 and above in grades nine through 12.
Munster High School’s Mustang marching band will compete with the top Class B bands from around the state for the third year in a row. These bands are from schools with freshmen through senior enrollments of between 976 and 1,810 students.
Under the direction of Chris Harmon, the 186-member Lake Central band took top honors on Sept. 28 at the Bands of America Regional Championship in Toledo, Ohio.
The band has competed in this regional contest since 2002.
The band won first place awards in two performances and awards for outstanding visual performance and outstanding general effect at the competition in Ohio.
As winner of the regional championship, the Lake Central High band will compete in the Nov. 13-16 Grand National Championship also held at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Munster’s 120-member marching band is under the direction of Bret Winternheimer and Kevin C. Lewis.
At the 2011 state championship, the Mustangs band came in 10th in the Class B contest, and in 2012, the band placed eighth in the state’s Class B competition.
Both Lake Central and Munster bands started the march to the state finals with 109 open class bands on Oct. 19 at four regional sites.
Of those 80 bands, 20 in each of the four school enrollment categories, advanced to the semi-state competition on Saturday.
“Now the 40 bands, 10 in each category, representing the best in the state will meet at the state finals to decide the four state champions,” said Mick Bridgewater, assistant executive director of ISSMA.