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Hastings marching band wins another state title

The Hastings Raiders Marching Band competed in the Youth in Music state championship in Farmington last weekend to end their 2014 season. It’s safe to say the season ended on a good note. The Raiders came home as champions in the Class A division.

The band competed against seven other bands in their class. Director Emily Chandler said she was most nervous about the band from Minnetonka.

“They have a good show this year,” she said. “They march with very few mistakes, and they are the only band that has beaten us this fall. We needed to have an almost perfect performance to come out on top.”

And that they did.

Each marching band is judged by six judges in six different categories. They are music execution, music general effect, visual execution, visual general effect, percussion and color guard. The six judges look at very specific items, including what the band is doing and how well they are doing it. Within these six categories, the Raiders took first place in music execution, visual execution, visual general effect and percussion.

In the end the band received the caption awards for “Best Winds” and “Best Percussion,” as well as first place overall to earn the title of State Champions in Class A. This is the third year in the row the Raiders have won this title.

“The parents are our biggest supporters,” said Thomas Wentzler, co-director of the band. “This year, we had to have twice as many parents help with props and equipment, and they came through every weekend to help the band. Without them, this year would not have been as memorable or successful.”

The band used ramps they borrowed from the middle school and parent John Moes to create a stage/platform two feet off the ground right in the front of the field. Members of the band, percussion and guard were featured at different moments all through the show by standing on the ramps, and the marchers had to work hard learning how to march across them and not fall off. Besides the platforms, the band also had six, 14-foot tall columns to bring alive the Greek mythology theme. The parents, students and teachers who helped to build the columns were Bill and Barb Chandler, Jerry Chandler, Dave and Robyn Tank, Cindy and Butch Kummer, Elizabeth Peine, Dick and Rose Stern, Emily Chandler, and Tom Wentzler.

The staff of the 2014 State Championship Raiders Marching Band includes directors Emily Chandler and Thomas Wentzler; percussion, Josh Wahlstrom and Jim Jacobsen; color guard, Amanda Flom, Alice Flom, Melanie Cordell and Lindsey

Wetterhahn; and additional staff: Jake Bohlken and Elizabeth Hardy. The music was composed by Gary P. Gilroy Publications with percussion arrangements by Josh Wahlstrom and Mark Diischer. The drill writer was Joel Matuzak.

The 83 members include: Will Alongi, Zach Anderson, Eric Bacon, HarleyJo Bailey, Grace Bauer, Mikki Becker, Lindsey Becker, Griffin Bleyle, Kayla Boogren, Mackenzie Cadwell, Tyler Callahan, Maggie Cargin, Brooke Cartwright, Matthew

Cater, Dylan Chamberlain, Stella Cisewski, Lauren Clark, Bryan Clark, Bob Connell, Zack Doffing, Ryann Fendrick, Kiya Galland, Holly Galland, Jackson Gergen, Nikita Gindt, Madison Gingerich, Miranda Hanson, Sarah Hardy, Megan Hill, Ryan Hill, Tessa Hubley, Kellie Hubley, Katelyn Johnson, Linnea Kisby, Maria Kummer, Abe Kummer, Marissa Leopold, Leah Lewis, Nick Lewis, Morgan Loch, Laura Lunde, Sean McAlpin, Katherine McCord, James McCord, Teah McGrath, Caden Miller, Cailin Miller, Erica Miller, Christy Miller, John Moes, Matt Moynihan, Tori Nordine, Katie Notch, Michael Notch, Sydney Nowlan, Tessa Nowlan, Max Mutter, Mary Parizek, Katie Peine, Elizabeth Peine, Sami Pollard, Sam Poncelet, Haley Rew, Rachel Roberts, Rose Schmitz, Ashley Schoenecker, Alan Shaffer, Erin Smothers, Nicole Stier, Sarah Stoffel Allie Stoffel, TJ Strandberg, Amelia Strauss, Braden Svoboda, Jacob Talley, Josh Tank, Andrew Tank, Lydia Traeder, Megan Vortherms, Micah Walk, Rachel Weber, Ben Wentzler, Rylee Williams.

Those interested in joining the 2015 Raiders Marching Band should attend an informational meeting Monday, Feb. 23.

More information is available at, or by emailing Emily Chandler at