On Saturday, the 47th annual Indiana State School Music Association’s marching band finals was held at Lucas Oil Stadium.

“The State Marching Band Finals is designed to showcase the top 10 bands in each Open Class,” according to the ISSMA. “The top scoring band in each Class (A,B,C and D) will be designated as State Champion.”

Two local marching bands participated: the Lewis Cass Marching Kings and the Western Panther Band. When it was all said and done, both outfits acquitted themselves quite well. Lewis Cass took home first in Class D and Western took first in Class C.

Western’s victory was its 17th at ISSMA.

Students who participate in marching band deserve recognition all year around, not just during this yearly competition. These young men and women can be seen out on the hot asphalt during the summer months tirelessly practicing their routines. Their parents can be seen shuttling them from one event to the next, often helping to lug heavy equipment.

There’s a reason the schools in our area have a solid reputation when it comes to marching bands. We’re known throughout the state because of it. It’s the blood, sweat and tears of the teachers, students and parents that make this possible. High school athletics like basketball, football and others often get all the glory. Let this past weekend’s triumphs remind us all that these students deserve just as much respect.

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