Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps to train at Western

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wiu712
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Sat Jun 09, 2018 6:49 pm

The Phantom Regiment says "Thank You!".
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To the Macomb Area Community and Western Illinois University,

THANK YOU!

As an organization, we know that we come with a lot of baggage (literally)! The welcome you provided to our traveling circus was overwhelming. We’ve enjoyed the beautiful campus of Western Illinois, as well as the phenomenal stadium and facilities. Everyone on campus and throughout the Macomb community has been so wonderfully nice and receptive to us. We’ve had a great time here on campus and hope to be back!

And we’d like to thank YOU!
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ST_Lawson
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Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:41 am

Scott Lawson - Board Admin
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Member of the Marching Leathernecks - 1996-2000
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RedNeck
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Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:17 pm

West side almost looks inoffensive when it is full.

Anyone have any idea what percentage of Phantom Regiment are high school kids vs.college?

One would half to think that over the course of three weeks some of these high school kids have maybe at least entertained the idea of attending Western? IDK I guess I don't really know where most of these kids live throughout the year when not touring.

On a side note. I had no idea the physical demands and the level of competition and prestige that goes into these World Class level corps. (Yes I did look up the Colts, very impressive as well Sir. Dubuque is a gorgeous city on a bluff).
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ST_Lawson
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Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:00 pm

RedNeck wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:17 pm
West side almost looks inoffensive when it is full.

Anyone have any idea what percentage of Phantom Regiment are high school kids vs.college?

One would half to think that over the course of three weeks some of these high school kids have maybe at least entertained the idea of attending Western? IDK I guess I don't really know where most of these kids live throughout the year when not touring.

On a side note. I had no idea the physical demands and the level of competition and prestige that goes into these World Class level corps. (Yes I did look up the Colts, very impressive as well Sir. Dubuque is a gorgeous city on a bluff).
If I remember correctly, the corps director at the performance said their average age is 19.9 years. Very few are HS kids. I doubt we'd get many kids attend Western from Phantom directly, but there's quite a few other ways that having them here can impact recruiting.
  • Lots of regional HS band kids were here over the last 3 weeks to watch them practice. This gets them familiar with our stadium and campus.
  • If this becomes an annual thing, some kids who want to march with Phantom might strongly consider going to Western so they get to practice at "home"
  • Eventually, many of those kids who are currently marching will be band directors or band staff members themselves. Having them be much more familiar with WIU and Macomb (and having them have a...from everything I heard...VERY favorable opinion of the location) will make it more likely that they'll recommend WIU as an option for their own students.
Location-wise, they're all over the world, really, although most are from the US. When the director was talking before the show, he said that the largest contingent was from Texas (big texas HS football often means big texas HS marching bands), but there's a decent number from all over the midwest. I know when I was marching with the Colts, I marched with kids from the UK, Germany, The Netherlands, Japan, and Taiwan. A good friend of mine was half dutch and half turkish and lived in Holland...boy did he teach us some interesting curse words/phrases.

Colts - yeah, I was lucky enough to make finals (top 12) 3 of the 5 years that I marched with the Colts. A couple of years there, we were really close with Phantom Regiment in terms of placement. I don't think we ever beat them at the World Championships, but I remember at least a few shows we were both at where we came out on top.

Physical demands - I ran the 800 in HS track, have run 6 half marathons, a 1/3 marathon at 9k feet above sea level, a few 10k's and more 5ks than I can remember and drum corps is BY FAR the hardest thing I've ever done, both physically and mentally. This video might give you some idea (and remember, I was a brass player, so while I was not wearing a 40 lb drum, I was holding a 10 lb piece of metal up in front of my face for 10+ minutes and only being able to breathe at specific points):

Scott Lawson - Board Admin
Western Illinois University Alum/Fan/Employee
Member of the Marching Leathernecks - 1996-2000
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