HOLTVILLE — As soon at the Carrot Festival parade concluded in downtown Holtville on Feb. 8, the Holt Park gazebo was the site of an old fashioned draw down, except the weapons of choice were percussion instruments.
In what has become among the
most popular of festival events, members of some of the bands who just marched in
the parade set up for the drumline competition, with fans of each ensemble
joined by the curious. Participants included Holtville High, Heber
Elementary and Calexico High schools.
As the announcer indicated, each performed well with Holtville taking third, Heber second and Calexico first. It was a bit of revenge for the Calexico Bulldogs as Holtville had won best band in the parade.
Each team incorporated its
own unique body movements with rolls, rotation, step moves, swing hips, thrusts
forward, sticks in air, turns and spins. All the time the musicians played the
bass drums, snares, drum quads, cymbals and sticks for an excited audience.
Family and friends were
sitting on the park lawn anxiously awaiting for their teams to perform and once
they drumming started, heads started to move to the beats.
Performing in the
Holtville drumline were eight boys and one girl, Kassandra Fimbres, 16, who
said, “I feel confident. We put the routine together within two days
because we weren’t sure if we were going to have one.”
Their performance was
synchronized, utilized the entire space of the gazebo, and the team appeared
to love what they were doing.
The Heber Hawks had the
largest amount of participants at 28. The team was well coordinated,
utilized the gazebo area well and gave a strong performance.
Isaac Morales, drumline
instructor, said, “I’ve been doing this for nine years. I want to
express my music talent and share it with youth. I grew up playing in the
Seeley Band and later in the El Centro Spartan Band. We (Heber Hawks) practice
daily about an hour after school.”
The team excelled
hand-head-body coordination in addition to outstanding drum and cymbal
At the end of the third
cadence, Emily Gomez, 17, team captain, did a stick twirl with her hand while
walking back and playing drum at same time. The incorporated
dance, synchronization, marching and playing instruments with just the right
amount of attitude earned the team first place.
When asked how she felt about her team’s
performance, Gomez said of the seven girls and 14 boys on team, “We
have really good players and I have had to play more with them. Practice
is what makes our team really good. What separates us from others is
because we spend so much time together.”