Printed from:

Welcome to Columbia Magazine  

Laker Marching Band wins third in State Finals

By Amber Hobaugh

The Russell County High School Marching Band traveled to Bowling Green this past weekend to participate in the Kentucky Music Education Association's (KMEA) Class AAA State semi-finals and finals events.

First up, the group headed to Warren Central High School where they faced off against bands from Pulaski, Murray, Mercer, LaRue, John Hardin, South Laurel, Elizabethtown, West Jessamine, Taylor, Garrard and Adair.

As awards were presented, Murray High School swept the field taking awards for Best Visual, Best Music, Best Overall Effect earning them a Distinguished rating and the top place in scores. Behind them, also with a Distinguished rating, and in order of scores were Adair, South Laurel, Russell, and Taylor. Garrard County also advanced to finals but did not receive a Distinguished rating.

From there, the advancing bands loaded instruments, equipment, props and students and headed over to Western Kentucky University to participate in KMEA State Finals at Houchens Industries L.T Smith Stadium. The top six bands from Class A, AA, AAA, AAAA, AAAAA all competed for top honors at the event. In total, 30 bands from across the State vied for the opportunity to be declared the best of their class.

During finals awards, in Class AAA Murray swept the field again earning the title of State Champions, while also taking awards for Best Overall Music, Best Overall Visual and Best Overall Effect. In order of scores Adair County was the runner-up, Russell County High School placed third, Taylor County and South Laurel High School tied for fourth in overall points and Garrard placed sixth.

To recap the Russell County High School Laker Marching Band season with their show Beyond the Desert's Edge:

To kick off the season the group headed to Adair County on August 26th to perform in the Mark Twain Exhibition, no awards are presented at this event but it was an amazing start to an award winning show.

From there, the Laker Band headed to Boyle County to participate in the 2023 Rebel Showdown where they competed in Class AAA-2, the group went up against LaRue and Garrard County. Russell County brought home awards for Best Color Guard, Best Percussion and a first place finish during preliminary performances. During final awards, the Laker Marching Band was chosen for the award of Best Percussion and placed third amongst a phenomenal group of finalists.

On September 23rd, the group was in Chattanooga, TN to compete in the Bands of America Regional Championship where they stacked up against bands from Indiana, Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee and were one of only two bands in attendance representing Kentucky. During preliminary performances, as one of the smallest bands there, they were able to secure their advancement to finals later that evening amongst 12 other phenomenal bands in the region. As finals were presented the Laker Marching Band placed 11th in overall competition receiving an overall total score of 64.4.

The band had a short hiatus from competitions for a couple of weeks before returning to the field on October 14th to participate in the Barren County Marching Invitational where they did not disappoint. For Class AAA preliminary awards, Russell received awards for Best Color Guard and Best Percussion, as well as a first place score moving into finals. Once again during their finals performance, the Russell County band slayed the competition and the group finished the night with awards for Best Overall Music, Best Overall Effect and Grand Champions of the event.

Next, the group was off to Madison Southern High School in Berea, Kentucky to perform in the KMEA Class AAA East State Quarterfinals competition. During awards, the Laker Band received a Distinguished rating, first place finish and also brought home for Best Music Performance, Best General Effect. This was only the fourth time in school history that Russell County has received a first place finish in the quarterfinals event.

This quarterfinals event was followed by last weekend's semi-finals and finals events.

Congratulations on a spectacular show and season Russell County High School Laker Marching Band!

This story was posted on 2023-11-05 08:40:23
Printable: this page is now automatically formatted for printing.
Have comments or corrections for this story? Use our contact form and let us know.

Russell County High School Laker Band at State

2023-11-06 - Photo from Kentucky Marching Band.
The Russell County High School Laker Marching Band won third place in the Kentucky Music Education Association's (KMEA) Class AAA State semi-finals and finals events with their show Beyond the Desert's Edge.

Read More... | Comments? | Click here to share, print, or bookmark this photo.


Quick Links to Popular Features

Looking for a story or picture?
Try our Photo Archive or our Stories Archive for all the information that's appeared on


Contact us: Columbia Magazine and are published by Linda Waggener and Pen Waggener, PO Box 906, Columbia, KY 42728.
Phone: 270.403.0017

Please use our contact page, or send questions about technical issues with this site to All logos and trademarks used on this site are property of their respective owners. All comments remain the property and responsibility of their posters, all articles and photos remain the property of their creators, and all the rest is copyright 1995-Present by Columbia Magazine. Privacy policy: use of this site requires no sharing of information. Voluntarily shared information may be published and made available to the public on this site and/or stored electronically. Anonymous submissions will be subject to additional verification. Cookies are not required to use our site. However, if you have cookies enabled in your web browser, some of our advertisers may use cookies for interest-based advertising across multiple domains. For more information about third-party advertising, visit the NAI web privacy site.