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IHS band kicks off football Sunday

The Fighting Tigers Million Dollar Marching Band takes the field for the second time in four years Sunday at the halftime of the Kickoff Classic college football game in Meadowlands, N.

Thursday, August 26, 1999

The Fighting Tigers Million Dollar Marching Band takes the field for the second time in four years Sunday at the halftime of the Kickoff Classic college football game in Meadowlands, N.J.

Ohio State is featured in what is traditionally the first college game of the season. This year, the Buckeyes will play against the Hurricanes of Miami.

The two traditional powerhouses will play Sunday, with the game televised on ABC beginning at 2:30 p.m.

At halftime, Mariah Bentley will lead the Ironton band onto the college field to perform selections from the Big Band era, including "Pennsylvania 6-5000," "In The Mood" and others.

"We’ve worked really hard for this so we’re not really that nervous," Miss Bentley said. "We’re mainly excited for the opportunity."

The band departs Friday night after Ironton’s season opener with Wheelersburg, taking three buses to the garden state.

Band member Kayla Carpenter is already packed for the trip.

"This is like way cool because we get to play somewhere that nobody else gets to," said Miss Carpenter, a clarinet section leader.

"We get to play at halftime at a Buckeyes game and it doesn’t get any better."

Kim Bowles, also a clarinet section leader, has been too excited to pack.

"This is televised worldwide so everybody gets to see us," she said. "Everybody has been counting the days since we found out in May."

Band members will also tour New York City.

The Statue of Liberty, Times Square and other sites are on the list of attractions the group will see. They also will watch "Footloose" on Broadway and have a private breakfast one morning at Hard Rock Cafe.

Besides getting a once-in-a-lifetime sightseeing opportunity and gaining national exposure, band members will get a confidence boost at the Kickoff Classic, Miss Carpenter said.

"Out of our nation, only two bands got picked and we were one," Miss Bowles said.

"We’ve played in front of thousands before but not hundreds of thousands," Miss Carpenter said.

The band practiced several times this summer and put lots of energy into their performance because of the event’s importance, Miss Bowles added.

"We’re better than ever and putting so much into these songs," she said. "I mean, it’s going to be on cable."