Port Perspective: A Senior’s Hofstra

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Port Perspective: A Senior’s Hofstra

Sofia Sawchuk, Freelancer

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Drum up to the sky. Feet spread, The scream of “Ten Hut, Kick Two!” bolting through the air. The final note of the last song hung in the wind, jolting through the band and crowd. I tilted my head up, closed my eyes, and smiled. I felt tears form, as the adrenaline and impact of this being my last time marching on Mitchels Field overwhelmed me. I couldn’t believe that this is it, and the journey I took to get here.

Every year, all the band kids play at what is called the Newsday Marching Band Festival during the fall marching season. It is an event where marching bands from all across the Island perform their field show in front of friends and family. It’s now located at Mitchels Field in Uniondale, right near Hofstra. But, because the Festival has always been held at Hofstra, we still call it Hofstra. We start preparing our field show for Hofstra during the summer in late July, at Pre-clinic at the High School, then at bandcamp at SUNY Farmingdale.

Over the past 3 years, every Hofstra, I remember getting off the bus, walking the field where we would perform, then sitting in the stands, and every year I felt the same anticipation and excitement that always led to an exhilarating performance.

Every year, Northport closes the last night of the Festival, so when we aren’t warming up or practicing, we watch all the other marching bands perform from the stands. It’s so interesting to see what selections other schools play, while also noticing how every band differs in size and skill (some even have mascots).

I never thought I’d be the senior who was emotional or cramming in pictures with all the band directors as well as taking selfies with their friends because they knew that this was their final Hofstra. But my 4th time I sat into the stands, earlier this October, it hit me hard, that this was my final Hofstra.

As a senior, you see Hofstra through such different eyes then you do in years past. You feel like this is it, this is your last performance, and you want it to be the best. I felt much more nerves this year then I did sophomore or freshman year. As an underclassman, I felt like there will be another Hofstra next year, so performing isn’t such a big deal, and if we sound bad, there’s always next year. As a senior, there is no next year, so you put so much more effort into making the performance the greatest.

It’s so weird, this past Hofstra being it. I was so much more emotional this year than years past, it was so sad to realize that I would never be performing at this Festival with the Tigers ever again. But, I came away with so many great memories (and a lot of pictures), that the happiness outweighed the sadness. In those stands, surrounded by your friends with the sounds of other bands zipping around you, creates so much positive energy, making the whole night (even though you get home super late, feeling physically exhausted, AND have school the next day) so much fun.

Looking through the Senior lens makes you reflect on the past Hofstra experiences, and lets you see how much work you have accomplished and how far you have come.

For me, I made it from a bass drum to drum captain, accomplishing so much along the way and growing as a musician, as well as also getting to play in one of the best marching bands on Long Island.

Even though a lot of blood, sweat, and tears went into performing at Hofstra for the last four years, I will never forget Hofstra. These Thursday night performances will stay with me forever.

I’ll miss you, Northport Tiger Marching Band.

“Drumline! Resume, Hut!”