Sunday, September 27, 2015

9/27/15 UPDATE


It was an extremely busy weekend for the JA Band, starting with the Jazz Ensemble providing a musical welcome to Raider Night guests to campus on Thursday; a pep rally, pregame performance, and drumline spirit in the stands for the football game Friday; and a very successful first competition at Biloxi HS on Saturday.

In addition to winning every caption in their class in the morning show at the Gulf Coast Invitational, with the guard earning perfect scores in two captions, the JA Band returned to the field for their second performance at 4:45. They had their best show of the year, earning first place in Visual and GRAND CHAMPION honors with the highest overall score of all 19 groups at the event.

Thank you to all the parents who came to support the students at Hillcrest and Biloxi. Special thanks to Ginger Thomas for serving as trip coordinator and head chaperone.

The JA Band returns to competition next weekend at the Groovin' in the Grove invitational at Oak Grove HS on Saturday, October 3. See the schedule update below for timing and other information.


From Booster President Catherine Arnold:

We need lots of parent volunteers for this week's home game against Prep. If you cannot be there, there are still ways you can support the kids, such as sending in donations. Let us know if you can help in any of the following areas:

1. Pregame Meal for our kids, Friday at 4:30. Lisa Thomas will be in touch with those who have already signed up for this.

2. Concession Stand. Frances Anne Dallaire will be running the show in the concession stand. Please text Lisa Thomas (601-613-3533) if you can work a shift. This is a great money-maker for the band, and we are grateful to the Athletic Boosters for giving us this gig! We want it to go well so they will ask us again.

3. Mat Crew - Halftime Friday and Oak Grove Saturday. Let Terri Fisher (601-572-1732) know if you can help with this. Mat crew 2015 is our best ever!

4. Hosting the Prep band during third quarter. Let Catherine Arnold (601-668-1172) know if you can help serve Papa John's or provide chilled bottled water or plates. Also, let's go out and support the Prep band during their pre-game performance.

5. All band dues and travel fees are past due unless you have made prior payment arrangements with us. Thank you to everyone who has paid in a timely manner. It is greatly appreciated! October invoices will be going out soon.

JA BAND 9/28 - 10/3

MONDAY, 9/28 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

TUESDAY, 9/29 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 3:00
GUARD 5:30 - 6:15 and 6:30 - 8:00
PERCUSSION 5:30 - 8:00
HORNS 6:30 - 8:00

WEDNESDAY, 9/30 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

THURSDAY, 10/1 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

FRIDAY, 10/2 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 3:00
4:30 - Dinner provided in the Band Hall by the Boosters
5:30 - Warmup on band lot in half uniform
Pregame - Watch Prep show performance
HALFTIME - COMPETITION SHOW - Parent help needed
Third Quarter - Reception with visiting Band

SATURDAY, 10/3 - Groovin' in the Grove Competition

9:45 am - Load Bus at JA - half uniform, bring a snack to have on the bus, because it will be a late lunch after the performance.

10:00 - Depart for Hattiesburg

11:30 - Arrive at Oak Grove HS

1:45 - PERFORMANCE - Parent help needed

2:30 - Gatti's Pizza for lunch and games

4:30 - Return to Oak Grove HS, watch performances

8:00 - Ratings

8:30 - Depart Oak Grove, fast food dinner stop

11:00 (approximate) - Arrive JA


Friday, October 9 - Drumline in the stands at East Rankin Academy game. Students will meet at the school.

Wednesday, October 14 - Extra evening rehearsal

Friday - Sunday, October 16-18 - BOA St. Louis Super Regional Trip

Friday, October 23 - Senior Night at Football game

Saturday, October 24 - MAIS Festival at JA - All band families should have received information from Jamie Niemeyer about helping at the festival and purchasing program ads. If you did not receive the information or have further questions, contact Jamie at


Thank you to all the parents and students who shared photos from the weekend! Here is a sampling, and many more our posted on the band's online photo gallery at this link: FALL 2015

Sunday, September 20, 2015

9/20/15 UPDATE


Thursday, Sept 24 the students have an early dismissal due to Raider Night. We will have a one-hour rehearsal, with the following timing:

11:40 - 12:00 - Lunch Provided in Band Hall
12:00 - 1:00 - Rehearsal

This rehearsal is important, with an away game performance and the first competition this weekend.


From JA Band Booster President Catherine Arnold:

We look forward to seeing everyone at the Band Booster meeting this Tuesday, September 22, at 6:00 in the Band hall. We'll hear from Mr. Carter about upcoming travel and other matters, from Jamie Niemeyer about the MAIS Festival, from Lisa Thomas about our Corky's fundraiser, and from Ginger Thomas about the budget. We would like respresentation from every band household at the meeting.

All band dues and family travel fees are past due unless you have made prior payment arrangements with us. If your account is not paid in full, please plan to bring a check to the Booster meeting on Tuesday as the band has many expenses to be paid for the trips that are due now.


MONDAY, 9/21 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

TUESDAY, 9/22 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 3:00
5:30 - 6:15 and 6:30 - 8:00 - Guard
5:30 - 8:00 - Percussion
6:00 - Booster Meeting
6:30 - 8:00 - Horns

WEDNESDAY, 9/23 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00


11:40 - 12:00 - Lunch provided in Band Hall
12:00 - 1:00 - Rehearsal

5:00 - 6:30 - Small Jazz Ensemble performs for Raider Night, in the PAC Breezeway. Mr. Carter has talked to those students who will perform.

FRIDAY, 9/25 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 3:00


6:00 - ALL STUDENTS need to be at Hillcrest in full uniform with everything needed for a performance. The band will perform the FULL SHOW during pregame, at about 6:40.

If you need help with a ride for your student, please contact Catherine Arnold ( to coordinate.

At Hillcrest, meet at the truck, which will be parked in a small lot near the south field entrance, off Bridger Road, from McCluer Rd.

Parents are needed to help with the mat, as always. Please let Terri Fisher ( know if you will be able to help.

After the performance, we will load the truck, then the drumline will play in the stands for the game.

After the game, please check with Mr. or Mrs. Carter before leaving with your student.



The first competition of the year for the JA Band is the Gulf Coast Invitational, at Biloxi HS, where 19 bands from 3 states will be participating in Festival format in the morning, and Competition format in the evening.


6:30 am (Note this is 15 minutes later than indicated on the information sheet that was emailed this week) - Report to the band hall, load bus. There are no changing facilities for the band at Biloxi HS, so students should be in half uniform and be prepared to get fully dressed on the bus before we arrive.

10:00 - Arrive Biloxi HS

10:45 - Warmup begins


Watch bands, Lunch at Concessions

3:15 - Awards for Festival Portion of Show

3:45 - Warmup begins


5:30 - Depart for Hotel - Checkin - Dinner in area

8:30 - Load bus, return to Biloxi HS

9:45 - Awards for Competition Portion of Show

10:15 - Return to Hotel

SUNDAY, 9/27

7 - 9 - Complimentary Breakfast at Hotel

10:00 - Hotel Checkout

10:30 - Depart

12:00 - Lunch stop at Turtle Creek Mall, Hattiesburg

2:30 (approximate) - Arrive at JA

Photos from Biloxi are posted online: BILOXI

A few samples:

Sunday, September 13, 2015

9/13/15 UPDATE

Thanks to the band members who pumped up the spirit in the stands at the PCS game on Friday night. They worked hard to support the Raiders!


The next Band Booster meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 22, at 6:00 in the band hall. Mark your calendars and plan to attend. We would like representation from every household as we will be discussing several important matters including upcoming travels and fundraising.

REMINDER: All band dues and trip fees are now past due, unless you have made other payment plans with us.


MONDAY, 9/14 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

TUESDAY, 9/15 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 3:00
GUARD - 5:30 - 6:15 and 6:30 - 8:00
PERCUSSION - 5:30 - 8:00
HORNS - 6:30 - 8:00

WEDNESDAY, 9/16 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

THURSDAY, 9/17 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

FRIDAY, 9/18 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 3:00 - No Game for Band

Be sure to mark your calendars with all the updated events in the sidebar to the right. (If you are viewing on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom and click "View Web Version" to see the sidebar.)


We have received the schedule for the Gulf Coast Invitational in Biloxi on Sept. 26.

The band will have two performances at Biloxi HS, at 11:45 am and 4:45 pm.

After the second performance, we will check in to the hotel and have dinner in the area, then return to Biloxi HS for awards.


JA alumna Sarah Allen Bowman performed with the MS State Famous Maroon Band at the game Saturday night. She is the middle flag:

Sunday, September 6, 2015

9/6/15 UPDATE

Thank you to everyone who helped to make Friday evening's game and halftime performance a success. This includes the students, who had a fine performance; the parents who helped with the mat; and the parents who provided the pregame meal for our students and the third quarter pizza for both bands.

The Briarcrest Band Director was effusive in his thanks for the hospitality and his praise for our students and their performance. He wrote, "Man, you guys were inspiring on so many levels! Thanks for the hospitality and for showing my crew what musical/marching excellence looks like."


From Booster President Catherine Arnold:

Invoices have been mailed and handed out to everyone. Thank you in advance for being punctual in settling your accounts as the band has many BOA-related expenses to pay right now. As always, let us know if you need to make payment arrangements. 

The home game against Briarcrest was a big success (football score notwithstanding!) and we have many people to thank for that, including the 16 parents and siblings who helped on the mat crew. 

A delicious dinner was provided for our kids before the game by Judy Caldwell, Frances Anne Dallaire, Cheryl Johnson, Ginger Thomas, and Catherine Arnold. In addition, Bill Sigler made a yummy home-made strawberry cake for Ben's birthday. A few weeks ago Lisa Thomas brought a delicious cake for Logan's birthday. These meals and treats are greatly appreciated by our kids! We also have some awesome siblings this year who are helping out behind the scenes with the mat and serving the visiting band: Courtney's sister Chelsea, Ben's brother Jon, and Charles's sister Jane.

Take a minute to check out the JA Band Facebook page for a truly heart-warming post from the Briarcrest band director Michael Parsons expressing his gratitude for the pizza dinner we provided for the visiting band on Friday night  The cost of this hospitality comes from our band dues, so we thank YOU for being such outstanding band boosters. 

Our kids are plowing through the bottled water in the band hall, so keep the water donations coming! 

We will soon be rolling out our annual Corky's fundraiser with a fun incentive built in, so stay tuned. 

Kudos to Lisa Thomas for being such a tireless hospitality chair and keeping us all organized! 


WEDNESDAY,  9/9 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

THURSDAY, 9/10 - Rehearsal 2:10 - 4:00

FRIDAY, 9/11 - AWAY Football game @ Presbyterian Christian School, Hattiesburg

The band will not perform the show, but the drumline will play in the stands to support the Raiders. Parents are welcome to ride the charter bus with the band.

3:45 - Load bus and depart for Hattiesburg
5:30 - Dinner stop at Turtle Creek Mall Food Court - bring $$
6:15 - Depart for PCS Stadium
9:30 (Approximately) - Depart PCS
11:00 - Arrive JA - We will have students call when we are about a half hour out

All band members should wear band t-shirts.

UPCOMING EVENT UPDATE: Look for information soon about the MAIS Marching Band Festival, to be held at JA on Saturday, October 24, including volunteer opportunities and information about purchasing ads in the souvenir program.


Abbi Thomas, a USM color guard captain, with her sister Mary Jo, at the Mississippi State/USM game on Saturday:

Caroline Burford, in Oxford before her debut performance with the Ole Miss color guard Saturday, pictured with her brother, JA Band Senior Christian Burford.

Sarah Allen Bowman is another JA Alum currently active in a college program, at Mississippi State.