How To Survive Band Camp
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How To Survive Band Camp

The officially unofficial guide to surviving band camp.

How To Survive Band Camp
Drum Corps Collectibles

It's August and for many that means one thing: band camp. This is not the "American Pie" version of band camp. This is hot and exhausting band camp. Band camp proves that you can, in fact, be a musical athlete. Camp consists of two (sometimes three) a days being outside in 100+ degree weather. Regardless of how long your camp is, there are many things you need to know in order to survive band camp.

Water, Drink it!

This is by far the most important thing you need to survive band camp. With the minimal water breaks you'll have, you will need a lot of water. You'll need more than a water bottle. A huge water jug, or even better, a Camelbak will be needed to survive.

Wear Sunscreen

Throughout the course of band camp, you will be outside more than you have been all summer. It doesn't matter if you are super pale or already super tan, you will burn if you do not have sunscreen. Bring some of your own. Don't be that guy who bums it off someone everyday.


If sunscreen protects your skin, then sunglasses will protect your eyes. Even if you don't usually wear sunglasses, wearing them during band camp will be very beneficial. If you don't don't own a pair, go get a cheap pair from Walmart.


If you are a seasoned veteran trying to teach a first year member, you understand this all too well. Your patience will also be tested when the band director singles out an entire section and makes them rep it until they get it right.


This ties in with patience. The amount of times you will run back and forth from one set to another is crazy. Oh, you started on the side one 15 yard line, have fun running from side two 30 yard line.


Drum Corps International is the Olympics of marching band, except they compete every summer instead of every four years. If you have run out of motivation, watch DCI videos until you want to be like them. It also important to know your Drum Corps shows for that year because they will be discussed a lot.

Section Bonding

These are the people you will be spending the majority of your time with (at least for the fall). If you want to have an enjoyable experience, participate in section activities.


Most section bonding will involve going someplace to get food, or pitching in to get a lot of pizza. Even if it's not section bonding, you won't have enough time to make a nice meal at your apartment. Fast food will be your friend that week.

Drill Chart (and any other other supplies needed)

If you forget your drill chart, you will be singled out and mocked the rest of the season. If you have your drill sheet, great! If you don't have anything to make a change on it if a change isn't made, like a pencil or pen, I hope the people in your section are willing to share them with you.

Keep a Positive Attitude

Yes, this is very cliche. However, it really is important. Everyone is equally as hot, tired and thirsty. If you choose to be positive, it will make the whole season much more enjoyable for you and everyone else.

This guide is the key to having a successful season! Good luck and go Band!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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