Writer says band teaches valuable life lessons

To the editor:

A few days ago I was treated to another performance of the Waconia High School band, as the members paraded through my neighborhood to practice and perform.

I live at Westview Acres in Waconia and I have enjoyed this event virtually every year.

Watching the members perform always brings back memories of the days when I was a band member at the high school, but in a different building … I was in the 1951 graduation class. The experience of being part of a team such as I was in inspired me to join the Football Marching Band the following years when I was a student at the University of Minnesota.

Many hours of practice were necessary prior to a football game to ensure that the formations we did at halftime were done to perfection, spelling out "U of M" and most anything else. One wrong move could mean an embarrassing typo on the field.

By this time of the year, graduating high school seniors probably have their futures organized, and many will attend colleges and universities of higher education. The opportunities of continuing the role of a band member are available in many cases.

I urge students to go forward and continue both aspects of a young life, that of a college degree as a start, plus applying for the band, if available.

Working together as a team, whether in the band, sports or any comparable activity, is necessary throughout your life. It is a trite expression that I expect you have heard before, but keep in mind that there is no "I" in the word "team."

For those planning another route in life, joining military service, I salute you for a similar kind of experience; that is, being part of a team effort that will stay with you for a lifetime. With all that said, which graduating classes everywhere hear in one form or another, I want to acknowledge the fact that our high school has a class-act band, as evidenced by their record in competitions, and to keep up the excellent work!

John Splettstoesser