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Band makes it to finals in Sioux Falls

The Hastings Raiders Marching band was one of 10 bands to make the finals competition last weekend at the Festival of Bands Competition in Sioux Falls, S.D.

The Raiders competed in class AAAA, the largest class, based on their school size. Being the smallest band in their class, they earned the third place standing against five other bands in their class. After the placement awards were given, the 10 finals spots were announced. To get into finals, bands had to be one of the 10 top scoring bands in the entire competition. There were 23 bands total, and Hastings earned one of those top spots. 

This is a big accomplishment for Hastings, especially in competition against bands that had 20 or more students than them. The Raiders competed that night in the finals, and marched their best show to date, earning a ninth-place finish.

“The success is being one of the bands to make it to finals,” said director Emily Chandler.  “And then the icing on the cake is when the students march their all-time best and know it. There’s an electrical charge from the group that you can’t put into words when everything lines up.”

The Raiders Marching Band is hoping to repeat the successes of this last weekend when they compete in their final competition at the Mall of America field Oct. 12. This is the 9th Annual Youth in Music Band Championship Competition. Preliminary competition begins at 11 a.m., with the Raiders performing last in their class at 12:45 p.m. They compete against seven talented bands, and are hoping to present their best show yet. The awards will be announced at 4:15 p.m., and finals competition begins at 7 p.m. Tickets for both the prelims and finals can be purchased at