LUTZ, Fla. — Daniel "Chip" Wood is a man who usually expects his marching bands to be among the best in Tampa Bay.
But this year, as he leads Steinbrenner High School's Marching Warrior Brigade, the teacher's expectations are different.
The pandemic wreaked havoc on marching bands, too.
"These kids have not had a regular band camp since the fall of 2019," says Wood. "About half the band program has not partaken in a normal marching band year."
For freshmen and sophomore band members are strangers in strange musical lands. They'll have to learn fast how to be part of a marching musical ensemble.
But that's what band camp is for. It allows members to shake off the rust and get in a groove.
With little more than a week before the first day of class, school gymnasiums, cafeterias and fields are filled with music.
Sophia, a senior member of Steinbrenner's talented colorguard, says this band camp is tough but also pretty sweet.
"So this year, they're throwing all this stuff at us, and it just feels like back to normal," she says. "It's fun, and there's a lot of bonding, and it's pretty great actually."
For a schedule of the Steinbrenner Marching Warrior Brigade's upcoming performances, click here.