STARKVILLE, Miss.--Mississippi State University's Famous Maroon Band celebrates its 110th anniversary this weekend during the university's 2012 Homecoming celebration.
One of the South's oldest university bands, the organization will be host for two special activities. They include:
--The Alumni Band, in which returning graduates join with current members to perform in the stands during Saturday night's [Oct. 20] football game with Middle Tennessee State University. The alumni also will be part of a midday tailgate luncheon.
--Parent Day, a recognition and appreciation at the luncheon of families of current band members. The approximately 500 expected guests also will be recognized during the game.
With more than 340 members, the 2012 edition of the Famous Maroon Band is both Mississippi's largest college band and the largest student organization on campus. Its ranks include representatives of 13 states and graduates of more than 100 high schools.
Nearly 70 percent are Magnolia State residents.
Established in 1902, the nationally recognized marching unit is led by director and band alumna Elva Kaye Lance, along with associate directors Craig Aarhus and Cliff Taylor. The Alumni Band was created in 1979.
With obvious pride, Aarhus noted that "25 percent of the band's current membership belongs to an MSU honor society and more than a third are involved in additional student organizations.
"More than 75 percent of the band graduated in the top 25 percent of their high school class, and nearly half graduated in the top 10 percent," he added. "We have 18 high school valedictorians and 14 salutatorians in this year's band."
For more information on the band, visit http://msuband.msstate.edu/history.php.