WETZEL COUNTY, W.Va (WTRF) – The theme for the Valley High School Marching Lumberjacks this year takes us on a journey through the pop hits of the 2010s.
This 25-member band consists of kids 7th through 12th grades and each member plays an important role in making sure their unique show gets the stands roaring every week.
“We have Cool Kids by EchoSmith is our first tune. Our second song is Grenade by Bruno Mars, followed up by Part of Me by Katy Perry. And to close the show with Taylor Swift being so popular this year, we went with Shake It Off, where it has a dance break in it.”Nathaniel Clemons | Head Band Director, Valley High School
Clemons says the kids helped build the show and it has been so much fun working with them.
“We have some small sections, but they’re small but mighty. We have one piccolo player. We have about five clarinet players, four trumpets, three alto sax, two tenor sax, one trombone, two baritone. And then our drum line has about seven members in it.”Nathaniel Clemons | Head Band Director, Valley High School
Clarinet player, Alyssa Pedrow, is a sophomore at Valley and has been playing in the band since the fifth grade.
“I love being together with everybody. And I just love playing an instrument. I prefer marching band because I like going to football games and performing our show. And concert band is just like you perform the songs and I like the moving and the crowd and I love being involved and everything.”Alyssa Pedrow | Clarinet, Valley High School
Tenor Drums player, Arien Partridge, says he enjoys being in band and is thankful for the support he gets from his fellow band members and his parents.
“They push me each year to do better, and I try my best to.”Arien Partridge | Tenor Drums, Valley High School
The Valley Marching Lumberjacks only has one senior band member this year, Evi Booher and she plays the tenor saxophone.
“We make more progress every day and I feel better about every game and about every competition we do. We’re getting better and better. It’s really just the time to make friends and show off everything you’ve done, everything you put the hard work towards.”Evi Booher | Tenor Saxophone, Valley High School
“These kids are really dedicated. It’s been a lot of learning. Some of them have never done an extracurricular at the high school level before, but they really love band. And I hope that I make it really fun and entertaining and inspiring for them.”Nathaniel Clemons | Head Band Director, Valley High School
Even through the long, hot days of practice, once those Friday night lights kick on and they are on the field playing for the crowds, it makes all that hard work worthwhile.
The Marching Lumberjacks will play their halftime show on Friday Oct. 6 where Valley hosts the Cameron Dragons.
(Video within report captured by WTRF Photographer, Ruth Muraca)