VIKINGS MARCHING BAND WANTS YOU
What is the practice schedule during the summer?
During the summer, the marching band will practice on Monday evenings in June/July, and Tuesday/Thursday evenings the week before and after band camp. Attendance is strongly encouraged.
What happens at band camp?
Band camp takes place Monday-Friday two weeks before school begins. This a full week when students learn the show music and movements. Camp begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 9 p.m. each day except Friday when they finish at 2:00 with a show that parents are invited to come and watch, and Thursday night for the skit night event which usually ends around 10:30.
Students need to be prepared to be outside in the mornings and evening, but they will spend time inside each afternoon during the hottest parts of the day learning the music. All students should either bring a lunch, or eat in the school cafeteria (new in 2017, lunches are free). Each evening LBA provides a free dinner (included in your dues) for all kids and instructors. Vegetarian options for dinner are available, other food allergies/restrictions cannot be accommodated so students can bring a dinner as well. Other items to bring to camp: sunscreen, a water bottle with name on it, hat, sunglasses, tennis shoes and dry fit comfortable clothing.
What is the practice schedule in the fall?
The band as a whole practices every Tuesday and Thursday after school until 6:00 p.m. On alternating Mondays, there are sectionals. One week is color guard and percussion, the next woodwinds and brass. Sectionals last until 5:30 p.m.
What happens on game days?
On game days, band members wear their purple show shirts, black shorts and black socks to school. If it’s hot, the band will perform in these clothes. If it’s cooler, students will change into and out of their uniforms at school. Uniforms (which include shoes) remain in the band room at all times when not being worn. Most students choose to stay after school and remain in the band room or elsewhere at the school. The drum line has typically provided Chick-fil-A sandwich meals for $5 as a pre-game dinner option. If a student chooses to go home after school, Mr. Fairchild will announce a time to be back, usually around 5:30 p.m.
Lakeside HS does not play any games on site. The games are either held at Adams Field (North Druid Hills Rd across from the Target) or as away games. Students report to the high school and are assigned to a bus to be transported to the stadium and back after the game. It is highly preferred for students to be picked up back at the high school after the football game rather than at the stadium, because all band members help unload the buses and put away equipment etc. For exceptions to this, parents should talk with Mr. Fairchild. They typically return to Lakeside around 11:30 p.m. for Adams Stadium games, and 12:00 a.m. for away games. Mr. Fairchild typically sends a text alert through the remind app when returning so parents can know when to pick up their students after the game.
Game times are usually at 7:30 p.m., but may vary depending on if one or two games are being played on that field. Check the CHARMS calendar for a definite time for each game. Parents must pay admission to the football games (unless serving as a chaperone - see below for more details!) At Adams Field, the bleachers are concrete, and uncomfortable. Bring a seat back, pillow or even camping chairs for a better experience. Concessions are available and usually includes hamburgers, hotdogs, popcorn, candy, sodas. The band sits together in the stands, and plays game music throughout the first half. At half time, the band performs their show (or a portion of it). Exceptions include senior night, homecoming and host’s homecoming, and when we are the visitors depending on the length of the home team’s show. At the 3rd quarter, the drum line goes down with the cheerleaders and leads a rousing set of chants, the band in the stands dance along to the drumline. During 4th quarter, the drums return to the stands and the band plays stands tunes as a group.
Who supervises the students at games?
Mr. Fairchild, his staff, and a group of parents serve as chaperones. Parents are encouraged to chaperone at least one game during the season, we normally can use 5-6 parents per game. The signup will be available in CHARMS for each date. Chaperones are paired up and responsible for checking off a roster for their bus (we typically have 3 buses). At the game, chaperones lead students in groups to use bathrooms, help pass out water, and sometimes assist with uniforms before halftime. Admission is free for all chaperones coming in with the band. Chaperones usually sit close to the band, but other family members/friends are welcome to join them, and it’s a fun way to meet other parents as well!
What does my $500* cover?
DeKalb County does not provide financial support for marching band. The student financial contributions pay for additional instructor costs, bus rentals, uniform upkeep, music and food for band camp and assorted other costs. The financial contribution is due at the beginning of band camp and may be paid online via CHARMS or by check placed the black lock box in the band room.
Parents are asked to donate a minimum of one case of bottled water per student, and students must purchase a marching flip folder and lyre for their instrument and dri-fit shirt to wear under their uniforms, but otherwise, there will be no other costs. *early payment prior to marching band camp results in a discounted amount of $450.
What happens if my child misses a practice or game?
Attendance is critical for a marching band to work properly! Families should not plan to be out of town or on a planned vacation during the fall semester on game weekends. Occasional absence from practice due to illness, religious holiday or unanticipated issues of course occurs, but the commitment to being in band also requires a plan to attend every practice and game possible. If you know your child will be absent, you should email Mr. Fairchild as soon as you are aware. Repeated absences may cause students to not be included in the halftime show.
What is the PE exemption?
Marching band serves as an approved substitute for one year of PE requirement. Students must earn this privilege during their first year in band, (and typically are assigned to take PE in the freshmen year). At the end of the first year, Mr. Fairchild will provide a list to the guidance office of all students who have exempted the 2nd year of PE requirement due to participation in marching band.
Besides games, what other activities does the marching band have?
The band will compete in two band competitions each fall typically on Saturday afternoons. The dates for these competitions are listed in CHARMS, and families should not plan to be out of town during these dates. Transportation by bus is provided and often a meal on site is either provided by LBA, or students may bring money to purchase food. Chaperones are needed for competitions to serve in the same functions as game nights (see above).
The band also participates in the DeKalb County Marching Exposition, held during the first week in October. This is a mandatory event for all DeKalb Marching Bands.
Occasionally the marching band will participate in parades. Depending on the parade, Mr. Fairchild will inform the students if they will be needed to participate or not (some allow only a small number of total participants, others the entire band will be needed). The dates for these will be provided by email and announcement in class.
Pep rallies during school:
The band also performs during the fall and winter pep rallies and special events at our feeder elementary schools or for other community events. Details for all of these will be shared through the CHARMS email system.
What are the expectations for fundraising?
The band programs receives some money from the school, but that is for classroom use only. The county does not provide funds for the marching band. The annual budget for the marching band is usually around $40,000. The remainder of the money needed to run both our marching band and concert band program comes from fundraising.
The band and color guard’s first fundraiser is a Cheesecake Sale. Items include cheesecake, but also other desserts, pizzas, pretzels etc. and are typically $15-$20 per item. Students are asked to sell their “fair share” of 10 items, or to provide a financial contribution as a “buyout”. The amounts will be announced each August when the sale begins The items are delivered frozen and must be picked up by parents from the high school on delivery day by 6:00 p.m. in late September.
The second fundraiser is the Citrus Sale and is a joint sale with the LHS chorus and orchestra. Students are asked to sell their “fair share” of items, and typically fruit can be purchased in a variety of sizes (10 pounds, 20 pounds, assorted fruits etc). Citrus comes back the first weekend of December for delivery and is a frequent holiday gift item. A student should choose to provide a financial contribution as a “buyout” if not participating in the sale.
Is concert band a club activity like marching band?
No, concert band is a class that takes up one (or more) periods of a student schedule, and counts as an elective.
Which band will my student be placed in?
Typically entering freshmen will be registered in either the purple or the gold band. These are entry-level groups and focus on the basics of performance and learning their instrument. The next level up is the Symphonic II band. This band will typically include sophomores and juniors and some seniors. The highest level is the Symphonic I band. Seniors and occasionally high performing other students will be placed in the Symphonic I band per the discretion of Mr. Fairchild.
What is the class fee for concert band?
The fee paid for participation in concert band is $50 and helps provide support to supplement the small budget provided by DeKalb County for instrument repair, additional instructor support, music and assorted administrative costs. The financial contribution is due at the beginning of the school year and may be paid online via CHARMS or by check placed the black lock box in the band room.
When are concerts held?
The bands will perform a variety of concerts throughout the school year. Dates will be announced via text alert and email, and will be included on the CHARMS calendar. All concerts are held on site at Lakeside High School. In a typical year, each class will play a minimum of four concerts (Fall, Winter, Spring and the Large Group Performance Evaluation in March). There is also a mandatory Symphonic Camp for all concert band students on the last Saturday in February to prepare for the county-required LGPE contest.
What is the required concert attire?
Gentlemen should wear black tuxedo, with black socks and shoes. Ladies should wear a black dress, with black dress shoes. An opportunity to be fitted by a local formalwear shop will be provided each fall, and a discounted rate available for LHS band students provided, but attire can be purchased separately, or obtained from a former student as a hand-me-down. Any student who has a financial issue related to concert attire should speak with Mr. Fairchild for alternatives.
Besides concerts, are there any other obligations?
Yes, the band will participate in competition each spring. In addition, some students may participate in additional bands such as Solo and Ensemble competitions, JanFest at UGA, etc. Students are encouraged to take private lessons and audition for District Honor band in December.
Do students provide their own instruments?
Yes, generally speaking, students should provide their own instrument. Some instruments may be available on an as-needed basis. Make an appointment with Mr. Fairchild if you are in need of an instrument. Percussionists (drummers) should have a stick bag with a minimum of 2 pairs of concert snare sticks, rubber mallets, yarn mallets and timpani mallets.
Can a student join band if he/she did not participate in middle school?
Yes, all students are encouraged to participate in band. It may be recommended that student without previous band experience supplement class time with private lessons to get up to speed.
Can my student participate in more than one band?
Occasionally some students will be registered and participate in more than one band. This is at the discretion of Mr. Fairchild, and most often occurs during the junior or senior year, not earlier.
How do I access CHARMS for the first time?
Go to www.charmsoffice.com, click the blue login button in the upper right, enter our school id "lakeside"
We use the following remind accounts for band updates. To sign up, text the appropriate code to 810-10.
Band Classes: @fairchi
Marching Band: @marchvikes
General Benefits from participation in LHS music programs
What does the band mean to Our students
"Because I was in band camp over the summer when I was a freshman, I started out the year with friends in all grades. It made high school not so scary. I have now been in the band for a couple of years. Marching band is more than performing at football games; we were also in parades for Comic Con and Hawaii's Pearl Harbor Anniversary, I really enjoy marching band. It's a lot of fun!"