Drum Corps International
Taco salad and "grasstroturf": Report from a Cadets camp

Taco salad and "grasstroturf": Report from a Cadets camp

by Paula Hyman

If you are one of my trusted and loyal followers, you already know that the Cadets had a camp this past weekend. I really couldn't be happier with the way things are going right now. This is the drum corps season I've been waiting for my whole career and it's only the winter. Gino Cipriani is one of a kind and the energy that he brings to the table is unparalleled. What an amazing brass staff we have. I'm very excited as you can tell, and just like every year, I once again feel blessed to be a part of this drum corps.

Paula Hyman (left) and Laura Westmoreland.
On Friday night we warmed up and played through some tunes as a full horn line. Parking Lot is definitely going to be the show before the show and that's all I have to say about that. After dismissal, it was time for snack. We had chicken fingers, which is a fan favorite when it comes to snacks here. Lucky! After lots of chatting, I went to sleep -- and pretty late, might I add. I didn't care though. For some reason, I can't sleep much at camps anyway. I think the excitement wires me and I would just lay there on the gym floor wide awake if I tried. Plus, I'll take all the time I can get hanging out with my friends. Saturday morning we woke up at 8 a.m. and were out of the school by 9 a.m. to head to the indoor facility where we would be learning drill. Instead of taking Cadets busses, we took big yellow school busses -- also referred to as "cheese wagons" -- to this site. It was pretty funny because legroom on there was pretty much non-existent, unless of course you were a 5-year-old -- then it would have been perfect. It took about 45 minutes to get to this place. It was an indoor sports complex with three fields. There was a girl's lacrosse team, a football team, and the Cadets. One of these things is not like the other. While we were doing basics the football team was yelling at us, but we just blocked them out. Although I do enjoy when people yell "American Pie" references at us. Let's talk about the field we were using. I will call it "Minifield." It was about half the size of a regulation-sized field in length and probably in width as well. We did a little adjusting, but for the most part, made it work. This was a great opportunity for Marc to see the drill and how it moves, and to see if we need to make any adjustments to it. We got through all that we had and even broke a sweat. Including basics I'm pretty sure we were in there for about five hours. This was a "grastroturf" field. You know, the Astroturf with the little black kitty litter type rubber things that get all up in your shoes? Yes, one of those fields. It was a lot of fun to get moving again and it was also a good opportunity for our new members to start learning the rehearsal technique. We don't usually step on the field until late April or May, so I'm glad we did this. It was an excellent five hours. We made our way back to the school and arrived around 4 p.m. to have our second meal of the day, which was amazingly enough, taco salad. The rest of the day was filled with lots of playing. We received our closer, which was filled with lots of notes. It's going to be incredible though. Sunday was our time to polish up on some things before hitting ensemble with the pit and battery. Ensemble makes me happy. We're just missing the last minute and a half or so, and we'll be done with the show. I can't wait to see what Jay is going to pump out for us. Well, I am going to be late for work now. No really, I'm going to probably be late, but writing this was worth it! All right guys, have a wonderful week and I'll be back with ya next week, same time, same place. Paula Hyman is a fourth-year member of the Cadets where she is the mellophone section leader. She is 20 years old and currently single. Originally from South Florida, Paula recently made the move to Allentown, Pa., to work for YEA!, the umbrella organization of the Cadets, Crossmen and the U.S. Scholastic Band Association. She ages out in 2006.

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