Many awards and words of encouragment handed out at VHS band banquet

Philip Nichols, Vilonia High School band director, joked with seniors attending the 2017 band banquet, held Thursday night, saying “I would like to flunk you all so you could hang around a little longer and play music.”

Yet, he said, it is also time for them to move on and follow their dreams. The mood was light for most of the event held in the high school cafeteria with about 200 in attendance. Photos and a video was shown. There was lots of laughing and humorous moments on stage as well as kudos and awards were handed out. Nichols also called the name of every senior relating their future plans.

At one point, students imitated Nichols’ pre-game ritual by chanting together “I’m a sideline. I’m a 50-yard line.”

Many recognitions were handed out including: Governor’s Award for Musical Excellence to Jacob Straub; the Louis Armstrong Award to Andrew Grissom; the Patrick S. Gilmore Award to Kenny Holubarand the John Philip Sousa Award to Kyle Yahn.