GCHS senior Adam Jenkinson, who pulled double duty as drum major and saxophonist during the Red Devils’ crowd-pleasing performance, said Grand finished third overall out of 11 schools in the 1A division. Salem Hills High took first in the category, while Stansbury High School took second place. The event, hosted by the Utah Music Educators Association and sanctioned by the Utah High School Activities Association, serves as the state high school marching band competition.
“I remember when the band started our freshman year, we were jumping up and down when our percussion finished seventh place out of eight bands,” Jenkinson recalled. We were so happy to not take last place. And now, we’ve taken third in state. We’ve come a long ways.”
Grand’s 35-member band, along with several color guard performers, performed a program called “N’Awlins: Second Line,” which captures the spirit of a New Orleans funeral dirge and ends with an upbeat rendition of “When the Saints Go Marching In.” The band is directed by music teacher Don McGuire, now in his second year at GCHS.
“Our band has always been a crowd favorite,” said McGuire, adding, “Other directors would bring their bands just to watch Grand County’s show. The Red Devil marching band has an outstanding reputation for having fun performing and being exceptionally enjoyable to watch.”
Prior to McGuire’s arrival at GCHS in 2012, the marching band was directed by Ryan Morrill, who was assisted by Lance LeVar and others.