Twirling Off to a Strong Finish!

Photo+by+Jason+Thomas
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Twirling Off to a Strong Finish!

Photo by Jason Thomas

Photo by Jason Thomas

Photo by Jason Thomas

Photo by Jason Thomas

Alleah Morgan, Staff Writer

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Going into my first year of high school, I didn’t know what to expect. Many people get involved in the different clubs and activities that the school has to offer. I chose to be a part of the Hillcrest Marching Band. I became a majorette my freshman year. Over the course of four years, I’ve grown so much. At the end of my Sophomore year, I was chosen to be the captain of the majorette team. I fearlessly led the team for two consecutive years. As the fall sport’s season comes to an end, so does marching band and my experiences become history. 

The last home football game of the season was dedicated to seniors. The seniors were provided an exclusive feature in the field show, and everyone’s families were there to support. The emotions filled the field as this would be the last time many of us would ever dance together again. My team made all of the seniors poster boards filled with the amazing memories we shared. That night was very bittersweet, filled with tears of joy.

Alleah Morgan & Aaliyah Doss / Photo by Alleah’s PawPaw

Over the course of the years, the band has become a family to me. We’ve traveled everywhere together local and far. This season we visited Central State University to perform at their homecoming parade. The Marching Hawks also performed in their battle of the bands. This trip was definitely an experience for all of the students, including me. Central State is somewhere I’d possibly go to further my education and join their dance team. To see the school and their band program definitely gave me the opportunity to consider my chances of going, greater. 

The band has also traveled locally to Governors State University where we performed in their pep rally. The college students loved the band, and we loved the feedback that we received. We even met alumni from the band. We performed their my freshman year as well as senior year, and it has truly been a great experience every time. We’ve also performed in the Circle City Classic in Indiana and the Branson, Missouri parade. Over the summer, the band performed, practiced, and hosted their first annual car wash. The Hawks raised a large amount of money to be able to do more and travel further.

The band practices usually ran from eight hours. During the course of eight hours, we practiced hard. Practicing music and dances, exercising, and team building. During my four years on the team, I’ve had two band directors. They both wanted the band to succeed, so they made sure at the end of practices that the band was nothing short of amazing and exceeded expectations. We marched parades annually including the Country Club Hills parade as well as the Hazel Nut parade. These experiences were amazing, people came to see us every year, and we enjoyed every bit of it. 

 

Photo by Jason Thomas

Being captain came with a lot of responsibility. When I became captain, I wanted to be a person of change. Though I felt that the majorette was heading into the right direction, I wanted to revise some things. I was on a personal mission to be a better performer, so I brought in personal instructors and trainers to teach different techniques. Also, I wanted the team to perform well and look good while doing it. I met with my band director and dance coach to find different uniforms to wear. We came up with a great solution and marched the first football game in a new uniform that the crowd loved. 

Although the band had challenges, we learned to adapt to any situation. Last season, the band took many weeks during the summer off under no direction. Finally, we got another director and began the season. Though this wasn’t the easiest change, we persevered. We began the season performing with little time to prepare, but, as a team, we did it without hesitation.

I am beyond blessed to have been a part of something that’s bigger than myself. During these four years, I’ve learned and grown so much. Being a part of the team with a leadership position wasn’t an easy job, but it was well worth it.

Overall, the miracle isn’t that I finished, it’s that I had the courage to start.