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WCU marching band competition moving indoors on Saturday because of rain threat

Members of the Dobyns-Bennett High School marching band perform on their way to their second-straight, and sixth overall, win at WCU's Tournament of Champions last year. Dobyns-Bennett will not perform in this year's event.


The rainy weekend weather predicted across the mountains of Western North Carolina has forced organizers of the 19th annual Tournament of Champions to move activities indoors Saturday, Oct. 19, at Western Carolina University.

Seven high school marching bands are on tap to attend the event and perform “standstill” performances in a judged exhibition in the Ramsey Regional Activity Center, said David Starnes, director of athletic bands at WCU.

“We regret that the weather has caused a change in our format but in the interest of student safety, potential damage to instruments, electronics, props and uniforms, as well as the safety of our audience members, we feel as though it is the best decision,” Starnes said.

Performances will begin at 10:45 a.m. Admission to the event is $15. Children age 7 and younger are admitted free of charge. For more ticket information, email

Bands scheduled to perform are:

10:45 a.m. - Mill Creek High School, Georgia.

11:30 a.m. - Ola High School, Georgia.

12:15 p.m. - James F. Byrnes High School, South Carolina.

1 p.m. - Lassiter High School, Georgia.

2:30 p.m. - South Caldwell High School, North Carolina.

3:15 p.m. - Kennesaw Mountain High School, Georgia.

4 p.m. - Walton High School, Georgia.

The event hosts, WCU’s Pride of the Mountains Marching Band, will not be able to perform its exhibition show in the indoors venue. To  learn more about the band or to support its upcoming performance in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, visit

The bands will compete for the Chancellor’s Award, a glass traveling trophy that is awarded to the grand champion. Dobyns-Bennett of Kingsport, Tennessee, is the two-time defending Chancellor’s Award winner, but will not compete in this year's event after the schedule changes.


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