KENTUCKY - Friday, the Kentucky Music Educators Association (KMEA) canceled the 2020 state marching band championships due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
"I mean we were really sad, I am and the association is really sad, not to be able to offer this end of the season goal for bands, the directors and the students. And it's unfortunate we're just afraid facing the reality,” says John Stroube, President of the KMEA.
Leadership at KMEA voted in favor of canceling the state marching band championships scheduled for this October, because they say they just want to keep students, staff, parents, and volunteers safe.
“There are some bands I think that will do that they're going to kind of refocus their efforts, they're going to figure out what they can do without the constraint of marching band rules. Now what can they do to entertain those home crowds, if in fact home crowds are allowed. That's another thing we just don't know yet. And so we'll see if that's possible,” explains Stroube
Since the end of the year state competition is no longer happening, some high schools in Kentucky are already deciding to not field marching bands at all.
"There are others I think, who are saying not only will they not have a competitive season, but they simply will not break out the uniforms, they will not be preparing for outdoor performances, they're going to go a different direction. That's a local call and in each case and I truly believe that each band director is doing what seems best for his or her given situation with the school. and i wouldn’t second guess someone from saying, we just won't march,” adds Stroube
This year would have been the 35th consecutive year of the Kentucky state marching band championships.