SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — If you’ve been to a football game in the Syracuse City School District this season, odds are you’ve experienced the sights and sounds of the district’s first-ever competitive marching band.

What’s a football game without a marching band? Well for Syracuse City Schools, it’s been quiet for years, until now. The district has formed its first-ever competitive marching band, with this being the band’s first football season.

The idea to start the band was brought to life by teachers Holly McCoy and John Chiamulera. Both now serve as the band’s marching directors.

“We started coming up with ideas, and we brought it to our fine arts director, Rory Edwards, and said, ‘We’d like to start a field band for Syracuse City School District.'” So we started putting the how’s, the why’s, the when’s, the where’s together and brought it to our administration. And they went ahead and said, ‘Hey, we’ll do this, but we have to have an interest,” said McCoy.

Now off on a high note, the band is gaining student interest from 7th to 12th graders.

“We started during the summer. We had a summer band camp, had quite a handful of kids come to that, and then we got the news out as far as to our students when school started in September, and we’ve been having rehearsals, and we’ve been growing as we go,” said McCoy.

“To be a part of the beginning of this band, that’s awesome. That’s really inspiring for me,” said Collin Dean, band member and senior at Henninger High School.

“We have such a big district, and having kids able to just cross-talk and meet other students from other schools, it’s a fantastic opportunity just to build friendships,” said Chiamulera.

A bond that is built over music.

“I like having friends that like the same thing I like, and I can talk to them about it all I want. They are like some of my closest friends now, ever since I joined here,” said Johnnie Taylor, a band member and sophomore at Corcoran High School.

The marching band is always looking for new students to join, regardless of experience, as they look forward to a bright and notable future!

The band will continue rehearsal and performances until the end of football season. They are hoping to compete and grow even bigger next year.

Students interested in joining can stop by a rehearsal! They don’t need an instrument. All instruments and band t-shirts are provided to students for free by the district.

Click here to learn more about the marching band.