The Marion Patriot Pride Band will march into the 2022 competitive season on Saturday at the Mid-South Marching Classic at Jonesboro High School.

Fifteen outstanding bands from Arkansas, Tennessee, and Missouri will participate in the contest. Bands will perform throughout the day, with Marion performing last, at 7:30 a.m. According to Marion Director of Bands Monty Hill, this is the first time in many years that a Marion band has closed out a competition. The reason, he said, is the size and growth of the band.

“The larger bands typically perform last,” Hill said. “This is a huge thrill for our students.”

Marion band members have been working since last spring to prepare for the competition season. This year’s show is titled “Galileo, Galileo” and depicts two days in the life of the famous astronomer Galileo from the year 1610. The music includes “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “The Planets,” and “Comfortably Numb” by Pink Floyd.

“This show is unlike any we have ever seen,” said Senior Drum Major Kaden Littlejohn, who is back for his final season leading the band. “Our musicianship, leadership, and desire to represent Marion is what sets our program apart.”

Saturday’s competition will feature bands competing by classification, as well as awards for specific parts of the performance, including music, visual, percussion performance, color guard, and drum major.

The Jonesboro contest is the first of what will be a busy competitive season for the Patriot Pride Marching Band. The complete marching season is as follows:

  • October 15 – West Memphis Marching Classic – 4 p.m.
  • October 22 – Arkansas State Open – ASU – Time TBA
  • October 25 – ASBOA Region Marching Assessment – Cabot HS – Time TBA
  • October 31 – ASBOA State Marching Assessment – War Memorial Stadium – Little Rock – Time TBA
  • November 5 – U.S. Bands Southern States Championship – Huntsville, Ala. – Time TBA

Throughout the marching season, the Marion band will be traveling in style with the addition of its brand new semi-trailer, as well as many new instruments.

“We have high expectations for this year’s marching season,” Hill said. “I am looking forward to seeing everything our students will accomplish.”

The Marion School District is an innovative and growing district committed to helping every student find their unique path to success in school and in life. With more than 150 years of experience serving families in Crittenden County, the district offers a high school, a junior high, and three award-winning magnet schools. For enrollment information, including information on school choice, visit or call 870-739-5100.