Serendipity Strikes - Meeting a Marching Band

While we were driving along I-90 for what felt like the umpteenth hour on Saturday, I grabbed Mike’s i-phone to check for email. He had received one through our Boyinks4Adventure account.

Just passed you on I-29 in Huron Tiger busses! What an amazing journey you are on! I said a quick prayer for you and I hope your journey continues to be enjoyable and safe. If you are in Brandon, SD around 7:00PM, come and watch the Huron Tiger Marching Band compete! -Larry Petersen

Fun. Or, could be, but who knows where it would take place, when it started, or what it would cost?  Besides, we were on a mission.  It was Minnesota or bust.

We had planned to overnight at the Walmart in Sioux City, but it had been a long day without a good meal so (in a rare splurge) we decided we’d just stop for a quick bite to eat near Sioux City and then continue driving another hour into Minnesota. A couple of exits past the turnoff for the Sioux City Walmart, we exited the highway, looked in vain for the advertised “Pizza Ranch” (we wanted to lasso a pizza!) and settled for a Subway simply because it was there. While eating we noticed a bit of activity going on in the area.  School buses with trailers.  Kids in matching shirts.  High-schoolers on a mission to get a fully belly before…something.  2 men wearing red volunteer shirts.

After talking with both the volunteers and some students, I confirmed that we were in fact across the street from the marching band competition that Dr. Petersen invited us to attend.

After talking it over with the family, and asking about the admission cost we decided to go. We found a spot in the school administration office parking lot, changed into warmer clothes (at least, I thought I’d be warm enough—should have put on my longjohns, too), and walked to the football field to buy our tickets and find seats - just in time for the singing of the national anthem.

In all, 14 bands performed. The bands were divided into different classes based on the number of band members. The Huron Tigers were in the second class, and competed against three other bands in that class. We thought the Tigers did quite well, although we may have been a bit biased. In the end, the Huron Tigers took 2nd place in their class.

We had hoped to meet Dr. Petersen in person, but his night was a bit busy. Mike had returned his email prior to the competition, briefly telling him that we ended up eating dinner right across from the school and decided to come watch the Tiger’s perform. Dr. Petersen got back with Mike with this response:

Excellent!  I hope you enjoyed the show, and the great state of South Dakota!  Safe travels to you.

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Thank you for the invitation, Dr. Petersen. we did enjoy the show and the state of South Dakota.  And - just a bit of slow highway driving combined with serendipity to get us into an event we’d be unlikely to attend otherwise.  While people often recommend we visit the big tourist attractions in a given area, it’s really these types of home-town everyday people events that we enjoy attending.

Our 'host' band - the Huron Tigers of South Dakota

Our 'host' band - the Huron Tigers of South Dakota

A marching band takes the field.

A marching band takes the field.

Storybird really seemed to enjoy the show

Storybird really seemed to enjoy the show

The host school for the event - Brandon Valley

The host school for the event - Brandon Valley

A band at the Sioux Review

Yes, there was singing.

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7 Comments Serendipity Strikes - Meeting a Marching Band

  1. Picture of Larry PetersenLarry Petersen September 27, 2011

    Thanks so much for blogging this!  I am so sorry that I didn’t check my phone until we were on our way home.  It would have been such a pleasure to meet you.  I have posted this on the Huron Music Parents facebook page, so you may be getting some extra hits this week!  Thanks for cheering for us - we were thrilled with our placement!  Again, God bless you on your journey!  Larry

  2. Picture of Kari SchnathorstKari Schnathorst September 27, 2011

    What an incredible moment of kismet! I am a member of the Huron Marching Band staff (colorguard/flags) and we were all quite intrigued to learn of your travels after passing you on the interstate. I am so glad you were able to make it to the performance! I wish you safe travels and plan to continue reading about your family’s fabulous adventures! Kari

  3. Picture of Brenda Jensen-SchmidtBrenda Jensen-Schmidt September 28, 2011

    I am a parent of the smallest bass drum band member from the Huron band and from what it looks like on your pictures we must have been real close to you.  You must have heard us yell as we were pretty LOUD!!  We are so proud of our Huron marching band kids and instructors!!!!  Thanks for attending the compition and supporting us.  Safe travels to all of you.!!!  Alan and Brenda Schmidt

  4. Picture of Kaylee MilbrandtKaylee Milbrandt September 28, 2011

    I am part of the HHS tiger color guard ( the blue one to be exact). I was so hapy to here that your family happy had fun watching our competition!! the color guard was .2 away friom geting first out of all the guards in our class and I’m happy that i got to share one of my best shows with you guys :) safe travels
          - Kaylee Milbrandt

  5. Picture of Kristina KayserKristina Kayser September 28, 2011

    I am the first snare player in the Huron marching band, and we are so glad you got to see us perform! Our band has worked very hard, including the drumline, which was .1 away from taking outstanding percussion in our class! Marching band is a great experience, and I’m glad we got to share it with you! Safe travels to all of you :)
    -Kristina Kayser

  6. Picture of Michael BoyinkMichael Boyink September 28, 2011

    Hey all - thanks much for stopping by and commenting. We are now in a small Wisconsin town whose name I cant recall where we visited with a HS friend of MsBoyinks (so make good friends where you are now cause you could be stuck with them for 20 years..:)

    We’re tucked into the corner of a Lutheran church parking lot for the night and will continue heading towards MI in the morning.

  7. Picture of salguodsalguod October 09, 2011

    As a one time HS (and college) marching band member and a parent of 2 marching band members, I thought this was so cool when you posted about it on Twitter.  Band competitions are a lot of fun, but you do have to deal with hard cramped seats and the cold.  I’m used to Ohio cold, I can’t imagine what SD cold is like. :-D

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