Friday night was another Milestone in my life. For the first time two members of my family marched in the annual Band Night parade in Bismarck. Myself and my daughter participated. I have fond memories marching in this parade with the Mandan High School Marching Band and now with the Eckroth Music Adult Marching Band. When I was a student, it was only high school bands that marched but these days you see musicians of all ages in the parade. It is a wonderful celebration of music inviting bands as far away as Canada and South Dakota to come and march and play.
Here are some highlights. This was my daughter, Brianna's first year marching with Mandan Middle School. Here you see a shot of some of the band, Brianna is hard to see but she is the Tenor Sax player in the middle of the picture. She was marching on the left end of her line.
I cannot tell you how excited she was to be playing. To be honest, I've marched in this parade so much it has gotten to be somewhat of a routine for me. Just another event in my life. But to see the joy and excitement in my daughter's eyes was kind of like experiencing the magic of Christmas for the first time through your children. It was freezing and all they had were long sleeved polo shirts with no jackets or anything. Brianna's adrenaline was running so hot she didn't even notice. My uniform at least had a windbreaker as part of the ensemble but I was still cold.
Here is a better snapshot that shows a little bit of her contagious energy she was feeling at the time. This is actually a cell phone picture. I'm one of the old fashioned cranks that feels cell phones should be strictly limited to talking on the phone, but I was happy to have a phone with a camera that night. My band was the last unit in the parade and Brianna's school was kind of in the middle. So I was able to take a few pictures while we were waiting to get started.
Like I said it was freezing cold standing on the capitol lawn. In between moments of teeth chatter, I was able to ask Brianna if she was cold. She just snorts and rolls her eyes at me. "No!" as if she'd never heard of such a ridiculous question. Fortunately, for me at least, things got warmer once we started moving and got downtown where the buildings blocked some of the wind.
Waiting at the capitol.
The Eckroth Band coming down the street.
Some post-parade pictures. I've been blessed with an amazing wife and two wonderful children. I'm delighted Brianna has got as much or more of an interest in music than I do. I have to also mention my son, Brian. (He's a Vikings fan, if you haven't guessed.) He was showing his purple and gold that night. I hope to have a blog featuring him once the Summer basketball league gets started. I was a little worried he would be bored of the proceedings but he said he had fun too.
I've been marching in this parade on and off for over 20 years, but this year was something special. Here's to hopefully many more.