R-E-L-A-X, Relax. We're going to be OK.

Aaron Rodgers has some wonderful advice. We need to just Relax. We are going to be OK.

MCBA State FinalsMCBA State Finals

Here is the 2018 MCBA State Finals schedule.

It’s the annual event that 50 bands are excited for. MCBA State Finals. For the first time ever, MCBA has 5 flights. Additionally, 50 bands are attending state. And, in a fun turn of events, there are only 3 awards ceremonies (instead of one-per-flight).

Spectator etiquette is going to be critical to remember this weekend. Just relax, be nice, don’t talk during any band’s performance. Ford Field is super acoustic. You may not realize it, but your talking can travel super far, clear as day. So, just don’t talk during a performance.

Please respect all other bands and all other spectators. If you don’t want to watch any band but your own, please come for your band, and leave. It really is as simple as that. There’s lots of great things to do and see in Detroit outside of Ford Field. Take a walk, stretch your legs, go eat lunch. Or, stay and enjoy the bands in a flight you may not normally see. But, just don’t talk during the performance.

And, if you are going to talk during a performance, do not be surprised if someone asks you to stop doing such. This event takes place in a football stadium, but people are there to watch bands. Concert etiquette should apply here. Would you talk through a symphony concert? Hopefully not. Don’t do that here.

Every year since MCBA has moved to Ford Field I’ve also witnessed spectators entering the stands during band performances. Often times this is at the encouragement of Ford Field staff. These staff members do not always understand marching band spectator etiquette. Please police yourselves and do not enter the stands during any band’s performance. And, unless it is an emergency, if you’re already in the stadium, do not talk during any band’s performance.

Supportive Whooping, Hollering, and Cheering are however all welcomed, appreciated, and encouraged.

The Financial Side of State

Tickets are $20 for adults, and $15 for students and seniors. “In order to avoid long lines at Ford Field, Ticket sales are cash only.” (source: MCBA contest announcers, various).

Programs, pins, and other things are available for sale. We don’t know if they’re cash-only or accept credit. There’s a good chance it’s cash – West Shore was the first Michigan competition I’ve seen accepting credit card ticket sales. Kudos, Reeths-Puffer. We’re finally experiencing Marching Band: Future (fyi: this is a reference to an old RP show. 2 people will understand.) Our advice for Saturday: Bring cash.

Mr. Video is broadcasting the 2018 MCBA State Finals. This is the perfect opportunity for anybody who cannot travel to Detroit for any large number of reasons to enjoy the event. The cost is $20 for the entire day of streaming. High speed internet is required. Credit Cards are accepted. Due to copyright concerns, there will not be any DVR or rewinding features.

In Conclusion

A fun tidbit: 2017 was the first year in MCBA history that all 4 state champions were from West Michigan. Rockford, Jenison, Lakeshore, and Godwin Heights won their respective flights. We’re interested to see how the new 5 flights divisions will impact this. Will we have 5 West-Michigan State Champions, or will we share champion titles across the state again? Will the winners all win by landslides, earning every caption, or will the judges keep us on our toes, splitting captions and keeping scores close?

We’ll find out this Saturday when all flights (except F5, who had a mini-state at West Shore) meet fully for the first time. Expect some shakeups this weekend, as Ford Field is where the real competition happens.

Best of luck to those bands who were the lucky 50 to advance to State. To the other seven, we really hope this year wasn’t discouraging and that you all are proud of what you’ve accomplished.

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