The West Virginia University Marching Band will begin the long bus ride to Baton Rouge, La., Thursday (Sept. 23), and as part of the trip, perform at two southern West Virginia high schools. The trip will culminate Saturday night (Sept. 25) when the band, affectionately known as ???The Pride of West Virginia???, performs at historic Tiger Stadium in front of a crowd of over 92,000 as the Mountaineer football team takes on Louisiana State University.
On Thursday morning, the band will perform at Oak Hill High School (approx. 9:30 a.m.), and then travel to Logan High School for an afternoon show (approx. 1:15 p.m.)
???There is a great deal of value when we make these stops in a lot of different ways,??? said Jay Drury, director of Mountaineer Marching Band. ???We feel as if the band belongs to the entire state. That is why we think it???s important to travel. Not only is it a good recruiting tool for the band, but for the University as well.???
The band will spend Thursday night in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and then travel to New Orleans on Friday. After a brief stop in the Crescent City, the Pride will arrive in Baton Rouge Friday night. The band will make the 1,080 mile trek home to Morgantown immediately following the game.
Drury said nine charter buses will be used to transport the 370-plus member band. Add in food and two nights??? lodging and the costs mount up, he noted.
So for the third year in a row, the WVU Foundation has been accepting donations through the Pride Travel Fund to assist the band with travel expenses this season.
???When we take the band on the road, especially a long trip like this one to LSU, it???s very expensive,??? Drury said. ???While the University and the Athletic Department provide financial support for the band, private support is needed as well. We can???t thank our supporters enough who have stepped up once again this year to help us out.???
Anyone interested in contributing to The Pride Travel Fund may do so by contacting the WVU Foundation, 304-284-4000, or visiting www.pridetravelfund.com
Also this year, there is new way to donate to the Pride Travel Fund at the touch of a button from your mobile device. Simply text the words ???WVU BAND??? to 85944 to instantly make a $10 donation. The charge will appear on your mobile device bill.