Crusader Band Update:

February 12, 2020

Dear Parents and Band Members of the Crusader Marching Band,

Welcome to the 2020-2021 Crusader Band program!  We are blessed!  As a school band, we are so very fortunate.  We have a great group of students, wonderful parents, dedicated adult leaders and a growing Band Booster organization.

Thank you for attending the Parent Information Night for this year’s marching band summer camp.  If you are new to the Crusader Band program, I am so thankful that you are here…and hang on tight!  If you are a returning Crusader Band member family, thank you for all you have done; please know I am so happy you are back!

BAND CAMP:  Our Band Camp this summer will be July 26-July 31.  We will once again be in residence at Wheeling University (formerly Wheeling Jesuit University).  The facilities are awesome, the fields are great, the staff (coordinated by the Conference & Events Office), and the food is terrific!  A short 30-minute drive from Steubenville, this location does not overstress parents who come to chaperone.  Here is a snapshot of Band Camp:

  • Schedule, Movement & Student Accountability: Starting with Mass on Monday morning, Band Camp is packed with activities.  From 7 am to 10 pm, the band is busy with building the shows.  We use the turf for field practice and air-conditioned facilities for sectional and large group rehearsals.  The main rehearsal hall is big enough for the band, Royalettes and Colorguard to practice the music at the same time, and indoors in case of rain.  Every movement by the band begins with attendance by the section leaders, and every meal begins with a student leader leading prayer.  We practice marching in parade formation to and from the field; we do not miss any opportunity to get the band used to both parade and on-the-field experience.
  • Rehearsals/Instructors/Sectionals/Supervision: Wheeling has very nice facilities for large indoor full band rehearsals. We bring in highly qualified specialists in all instrument/specialty areas to run the sectionals. The section leaders and instructors run the small group rehearsals, and are with the kids during full band rehearsals both on and off the field.  All adult instructors are background checked and are also do double duty as chaperones for safety.
  • Recreation: There is a movie night, a dance, and perhaps this year we will use the pool facilities at the University during an evening.  The students are welcome to bring Frisbees, game equipment, game consoles with a TV, or other personal games.  There is a break in the afternoon before dinner, and some free time in the evening before lights out that is relatively free for the students to relax.
  • Goal: The goal for this year’s Band Camp is to rehearse and refine the Pre-game, the First and the Second show to present to the families at the end of our camp family evening performance.

Mini-Camps:  Summer outside of Band camp involves about 6 weeks of preparation for the marching season.  We will meet for one week in June, four weeks in July, and one week in August.  Mini-camps are usually Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, from 8 am to noon.  Marching techniques, field drill work, and music rehearsals are the focus.

Summer Attendance:  All camps are mandatory both the mini-camps and the residential Band Camp. Students need to have a note from a parent for any absence.  For any other reason than illness, please be a week in advance with notes for absences.  I provide published camp dates in advance so that informed employers can schedule students around the mini-camp times.

Costs:  Mrs. Bucci, the Band Booster President, will go over the various costs for all band personnel.  The Roster Shirt, the Blue Polo Shirt (for summer uniform), shoes and camp deposit are all due now.  The cost of the camp needs to be completely paid before camp begins, and we provide ways to minimize the cost and maximize the benefits to the band members.

I realize all this seems overwhelming right now, but we have plenty of time to plan, practice and pay before camp begins.  I look forward to working with all of you, and can not tell you how much fun it all is!  Most importantly, please keep our entire process, the band, this school and our students in prayer as we move through the process.  God is good!

Sam Johnston

Band Director, CCHS

From Alex & Sarah

Hello returning and new band parents and students,

For those of you who do not know me, my name is Alex Milewsky and I am the color guard (or flag) coach. I was on Central’s guard for 4 years when I was in high school and this will be my 7th season as the coach! If you are unfamiliar with the term, color guard is a type of sport and art that works with a flag to add visual movements to the sound of the band. We paint the picture or tell the story that goes with the music.

I am very excited to start this season with Mr. J and Sarah. We try our best to work closely with each other to ensure the best for every child who marches in this beautiful band. Even if your child is not on color guard, we are still one big family, and I can’t wait to see each and every one of the grow over this season. We have some exciting ideas ready for this year, and we can not wait to showcase our talents on that football field.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and I hope that this will be a good year for me and all of the students in the band! If there are any questions, feel free to email me at!

Thanks again,

Alex Milewsky