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BHS-hosted band tourney offers incentives
Eleven slated to perform Saturday, including furthest competitor ever
BARSTOW • One high school marching band scheduled to compete in this weekend’s High Desert Field Show Tournament will be the longest-traveled of any in the event’s 29-year history.
Brawley High School — located in the town of Brawley in Imperial County, approximately 217 miles southeast of Barstow — is one of 11 bands slated to perform Saturday in the annual field show at Barstow High School’s Langworthy Field.
“I’ve never had a band come this far,” BHS Band Director Tim Garvin said.
Persuading bands outside the High Desert to perform in Barstow, a city in the deep pocket of an already-isolated region, requires incentives, Garvin admitted.
Some of those incentives, according to Garvin, included higher-quality trophies, a reasonable entry fee, lower admission prices and affordable snacks at the concession stand.
The show, early for competition season, is also penalty free, meaning bands shouldn’t fret over the kinks which historically don’t get worked out until the end of October.
“That reduces a lot of stress,” he said.
And the acoustics at Langworthy Field “work really well for bands,” according to Garvin.
If that isn’t enough, a director’s hospitality tent includes food catered by Los Domingos, Garvin said.
Touting itself as “the premier event of its kind in the High Desert,” the field show tournament is scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m. with opening ceremonies, featuring a performance by the Barstow Junior High Hawk Marching Band.
The Marine Corps Logistics Base Color Guard will present the colors, according to an event flyer.
Nine bands are scheduled to compete starting at approximately 1 p.m. The BHS Aztec Marching Band will perform to conclude the show. Although BHS will be scored and judged, as the host band, they will not compete.
High school bands formally entered into the competition include Oak Hills, Granite Hills, Yucca Valley, Colton, Fontana, Apple Valley, Burroughs, Rialto and, of course, Brawley.
Tickets will be available at ticket booths Saturday. Tickets are $10 for general admission; $5 for individuals over 55 years old, children 5 to 11 and students with ASB or school ID cards; and free for children under 5.
The event is sponsored by the Barstow Unified School District, Barstow High School and BHS Band Boosters Inc.
Visit http://barstowaztectband.blogspot.com for more information.
Shea Johnson may be reached at (760) 256-4126 or at SJohnson@DesertDispatch.com.