Once again, it is that time of year where the Pride of Mid-America must return their uniforms, package their drums, and hand in their poms. Although these activities may be somber, the memories from this season are not. After a peculiar season in 2020, we have been fortunate and overjoyed with the number of activities and opportunities that we have had in our 2021 season.
The Pride of Mid-America Marching Band held their annual band banquet on Sunday, December 5, 2021. The banquet is a way to thank all the ensemble members and staff for their dedication and time put towards the ensemble. At this banquet, each member is recognized for their year of service to the ensemble, with fourth year members earning their coveted blanket. During the dinner, awards and recognition are also given out. This year, the ceremony started with a speech from Dr. Ryan Hourigan, the Director of the School of Music, who commended the ensemble for their dedication to their craft. Director of Bands Emeritus Dr. Joseph Scagnoli and Director of Bands Dr. Thomas Caneva also spoke to the band, acknowledging POMA’s hard work and enthusiasm throughout the season. Following these speeches, Dr. Caroline Hand, Director of POMA, recognized several groups within the ensemble, including the staff members, Uniform Crew, TLC/Equipment Staff, Section Leaders, Drum Majors, Graduate Assistants, and the Public Relations Team.
After the recognitions, Senior Speaker AnnaMarie Kelly shared fond memories of her section, her peers, and her passion for what she does. She thanked POMA for the fond memories, reminiscing about rainy game days, section traditions, and the realization that the time went by too quickly. Following AnnaMarie’s speech, individual members of the ensemble were recognized. Rhonda Reynolds, the Color Guard instructor, gave the Outstanding Color Guard Award to Sydney Douhan. Senior Ian Haas was presented the Outstanding Percussion Award by Dr. Hand in Mark Hendrickson’s place. Dr. Hand also presented the Outstanding Member Award to senior and TLC Lead Mary Asante while senior Caroline Reel received the Outstanding Leader Award.
The banquet ended with Dr. Hand individually reading every member’s name in the Pride of Mid-America to commemorate and thank each student for their dedication to the band. The banquet is typically the closing event for the season, but this year POMA had another exciting event.
On December 25th, 2021, the Pride of Mid-America Marching Band enthusiastically cheered on the Ball State football team in the Crampton Bowl stadium in Montgomery, Alabama. The Ball State football team was chosen to play Georgia State in the TaxAct Camellia Bowl. This was the first Bowl Game since 2013 that POMA was able to travel with the football team. The Pride of Mid-America was so excited to travel to Alabama to support their football team. Although no band performed on-field that day, POMA was proud to play in the stands and to cheer on the Ball State football team.
For the Pride of Mid-America, this has been a thrilling and memorable season. Although we will miss them, we wish all our seniors the best of luck in their future endeavors. As for POMA, we cannot wait to see returning and new members in the fall for our 2022 season! To stay up-to-date on all of POMA’s activities, remember to follow our social media, provided below, and as always, Chirp Chirp and Go Cards!
Facebook: The Ball State “Pride of Mid-America” Marching Band
Written by: Jennifer McGowen
Photos by: Jennifer McGowen