Senior William Hinchliffe rushed around anxiously trying to get ready for work. He decided to check his email once more before leaving. He was filled with pride and excitement as he read the congratulatory invitation to play in the All-American Army Bowl Band.
“I was pretty stoked, it was awesome. It was something I put a lot of hard work into and to just finally get that was really incredible,” Hinchliffe said with a smile. “I was getting dressed for work and I checked it one last time before I left. I was asking people at work if I could borrow their phone to call my mom and tell her the good news.”
While this is a huge honor for Hinchliffe he is not the only one filled with excitement. Band teacher Allen Klaes is proud that one of his students has been chosen to participate.
“I was really excited for him, I’ve known some students and directors that have participated in this event in the past. They all spoke very highly of it. It’s a really outstanding activity and I was just excited for the student to be able to participate in it,” Klaes said. “It’s a big honor for that student and reward for all his hard work, but it’s also a great reflection upon the band, the school, and the entire community here.”
The All-American Army Bowl Band is sponsored by the U.S. Army. High school students are chosen from all over America to play in the game and participate in the marching band. Hinchliffe was chosen to play his trombone in the halftime show.
“We play in the half time show for the Army All American game,” Hinchliffe said. “So it’s like all the best football players in the country and all the best musicians in the country. They bring us all together and we play the halftime show for them.”
At the end of this year Hinchliffe will go to San Antonio, Texas to practice his routine with the rest of the marching band. It’s an all expenses paid six day trip but they will only get 24 hours to practice all together.
“We don’t actually get to see each other until we get down there but we are supposed to have all of our music and drills memorized before we show up. We get about 24 hours once we get there to practice all together and that’s the only time we get before the show but I’m more excited than nervous,” Hinchliffe said. “It’s for six days in late December early January and they pay for everything. They even give us horns to play, but we don’t get to take them home.”
Hinchliffe is grateful for this opportunity and thanks the army for allowing him to be a part of it.
“It just means a lot to me especially it being the army that sponsors it. I’ve always wanted to be in the navy so to have something military based it’s pretty incredible,” Hinchliffe said. “It is just a really incredible experience and I want to thank the army for putting it all on for me and allowing me to do this.”
By Katelyne Featherstone