MILTON — The president of the Milton Area High School Marching Black Panthers believes the theme for this year’s field show is a perfect reflection of the band’s current status.

Sarah Flynn, a senior who plays the trumpet, said “Out With The Old And In With The New” is the theme for the field show.

“It’s about new beginnings,” Flynn said, of the show. “The band, we got new uniforms this year.”

Alyssa Williams, band director, said the old uniforms were 11 years old and in need of being replaced.

“The buttons were not staying on,” she said, of the old uniforms. “We were sewing them on.”

The new uniforms are guaranteed for 10 years. Williams said half of the cost was covered by the school district, while the other half was paid for by the band boosters.

During an October 2018 school board meeting, Williams said the total cost of the uniforms would be $27,000.

She and Flynn both said enthusiasm is running high among band members this year.

“We are small, but we are mighty,” Williams said.

Flynn said it was “a really good feeling” for she and her fellow band members to be able to put on new uniforms this year.

“It makes us look sharp and gives us renewed enthusiasm,” she said.

Flynn said the students started preparing the field show in late July. Songs include “Bye, Bye, Bye” by NSYNC, “Good Riddance” by Green Day and “Good To Be Alive” by Andy Grammer.

“It’s always difficult trying to learn the music and putting the drill with it,” Flynn said. “It always comes together. The enthusiasm made it easier.”

She said students were particularly enthused to be learning to play a song by NSYNC.

“Everybody was really excited to play it,” Flynn said. “It was familiar.”

The band continues to practice the field show twice per week, during two-hour practice sessions.

“It’s getting better,” Flynn said, of the field show. “We are adding to it, body movements.”

Often times, she said band members wish they could see the show from the perspective of a fan in the stands.

“It would be cool to see what it looks like at a football game,” Flynn said.

In addition to performing at football games, Flynn said the band participates in four parades each year.

Typically, pep tunes which the band would play in the stands during football games are played during the parades.

“I hope the hard work we put into this is worth it and the community enjoys it,” Flynn said.

Band members and the instruments they play are: Rebecca Gehrer and Morgan Solomon, flute; Skyler Harrington, Kayli Johnson and Arella Sandrick, clarinet; Renee Benfer, Bradley Newcomer and Ashley Barnett, saxophone; Sarah Flynn, Emily Reynolds and Iran Walter, trumpet; Levi Shamblen and Ashley Shamblen, mellophone; Lucy Bower and Lucas Hower, low brass; Xavier Godown and Mary Peterman, pit percussion; Jillian Latchford, Spencer Mabus, Will Raup and Alex Rinehart, battery percussion; and Kiersten Bowers, Mya Cromwell, Mason Erb, Riley Godown, Jessica Morgan, Emily Nicholas, Olivia Rohland, Lillyann Tilman and Emily Walls, color guard.

Staff includes: Alyssa Williams, director; Steve Klees, assistant director and percussion instructor; Cherity Rinehart, color guard instructor; and Denny Carpenter, drill design.

Staff writer Kevin Mertz can be reached at 570-742-9671 or email kevin@standard-journal.com.

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