Sunday, September 25, 2011

Band, Buckwheat Festival, and Half Time

     I ended up being too busy this summer, so this is my first blog in a while.  Since this week is Buckwheat Festival week, I thought i would share a few of my favorite memories from back in the day.  For any young people, back in the day for me means back in the 80's LOL.
        One of my favorite memories was always being in the band and marching in the Buckwheat Festival.  I first did this with the Central Preston Junior High Cherokee Band under the direction of John Wills.  We would practice for weeks around the Honor Roll in Tunnelton, making sure we turned corners correctly, had straight ranks, and sounded great.  It was so exciting to be in a parade I had only watched for years before.  That thrill continued on as I entered high school and became part of the Central Preston High School Cavalier Marching Band (the orange crush  as Mr. Kurilko started calling it-- our school colors were orange and black, so we had orange tops with black pants with big black cavalier hats with orange plumes).  It was always thrilling to be in the parade, even though most of the time we were last being the home town band (unless Queen Ceres or King Buckwheat came from our school).  It was just such a blast and band was fun.  
        This leads me up to my second favorite memory - football season and half time shows.  I never was really big into sports, but loved band and being able to perform.  I never really paid much attention to the actual game but had fun sitting in the stands with my fellow bandmates.  I usually brought a big tub of popcorn and we would eat and laugh and carry on, and occasionally watch the game LOL.  I have to say our halftime shows were pretty cool (as were pre game shows now that I think about it).  One of my most favorite things was Mr. Kurilko having each one of us bring a flashlight to use in the shows.  We would either make the outline of WV or spell out CPHS, turn on our flashlights and lay them on the ground in front of us.  Then the field lights would be turned out, and we would play in the dark with our lights making the shapes.  I can remember that always brought thunderous applause and cheers from the crowds.  It was just sooo cool.  I don't if anyone else has ever done that since.  At any rate, I continued with band through my college years, becoming a member of the Fairmont State Falcon band.  I have made a lot of friends in that band and have fond memories of good times, which I won't go into because it would incriminate both me and my college friends LOL.   
      My final favorite memories are of the Buckwheat Festival and all the things you could do.  As a kid, I always loved riding the rides and had a blast.  Buckwheat Cakes however were a taste i had to acquire as i hated them as a kid.  Its funny how you hate some things as a kid but grow to love them as an adult.  Other favorites included the art exhibits, corn dogs from Love Chapel, cotton candy, and time with family and friends.  Buckwheat Festival always seems to be about coming home, and that is truly a great experience for those who have long since moved away.   
      This Buckwheat Festival is going to be extra special as I get to celebrate my 25th high school reunion with old classmates who have become really good friends in adulthood.   We have a weekend filled with fun, old times, and new beginnings.  Its been great to reconnect with classmates i haven't seen in 20 years on Facebook.  Let the good times roll and everyone have a wonderful festival week!