The 35th annual Indiana State School Music Association marching band season steps off with District Festivals this weekend at seven state sites and two non-competitive festival sites on Oct. 6.
More than 170 high school bands with more than 16,000 students will participate in these performances sponsored annually by ISSMA, and its corporate sponsor, The Indiana Dairy Farmers.
Those bands reaching a predetermined score at District will advance to Regional events, which will take place at four different locations on Oct. 13. Bands enter Class A, B, C and D according to the size of the school with Class A being the largest.
At each Regional site, the top five scoring bands in each of the four classes from the North and South will meet at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis on Oct. 20 to determine the four state champion bands.
The Indiana Dairy Farmers, corporate sponsors of the Indiana State School Music Association, will present a $1,000 scholarship to a student from each of the four state champion bands.
A panel of out-of-state judges will evaluate the bands on music and visual captions at each event.
At the District level, special trophies are presented in each of these categories.
The District sites include Penn/Mishawaka, Fort Wayne Homestead, Lewis Cass/Walton, Lawrence Central/Indianapolis, Southport/Indianapolis, Columbus East and Jasper.
The festival sites are Franklin Comm-unity/Franklin and Jackson Field/South Bend.
The composite schedules for each of the sites is available at www.issma.-net.
Following District, the Marching Knights will compete at Ben Davis on Oct. 6, before taking part in Regional competition on Oct. 13.
Following District competition, the Imperial Regiment will compete in two contests at Center Grove and Carmel on Oct. 6, before Regional Competition on Oct. 13.