"It feels amazing any time that you can convince a group of students, staff and parents to work hard for a common goal and they are rewarded for their efforts," Vanderstouw said. "The feeling is both exciting and humbling. To make history like that is really something special. Realizing that the students will always have a championship on their resume is the best part."
One highlight for the marching band's season was an October performance aboard the U.S.S. Intrepid, one of the most successful ships in U.S. history, which is now a premiere educational center in New York City. The band performed for approximately 200 people including many veterans.
"I thought performing at the Intrepid would be a great opportunity to connect the students and their music to an actual piece of history," Vanderstouw said. "While winning a state championship was amazing, performing on the deck of the U.S.S. Intrepid was a moment I will never forget. It was an incredibly poignant moment for all of us."
In addition to their winning season, the Baldwinsville Central School District Board of Education honored members of the Baldwinsville Marching Band for their undefeated season this past Monday, Dec. 7.
"Every time we won a show our students were excited, but remained professional," Vanderstouw said. "The greatest gift from this season has been working with students who understand the importance and relevance of performing a military show. We never let 'winning' become more important than honoring our veterans. Ultimately, it was this maturity that helped us remain successful all season."
Unfortunately, there are no more scheduled performances of the Baldwinsville Marching Band's "Pearl Harbor: December 7, 1941" show. However, if you missed the performance, you can check it out at youtube.com. Simply type in Baldwinsville Marching Band.
"I believe that we have a great music program here at Baldwinsville," Vanderstouw said. "I hope to encourage many more of our students to join and be a part of our great music programs in the future."
Senior Drum Major Emily Gell, left, and Junior Drum Major Dan Mullarney, right, pose with World War II Pearl Harbor survivor Daniel Fruchter in New York City.