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CHS band plays opposing team’s fight song at football games

“Give a yell, give a cheer for the Papermakers here…” is just the beginning of the Papermaker fight song that the CHS band plays every home football game.

Not only does the band have to learn their own fight song, but they also need to learn the opposing team’s fight song as well. This tradition isn’t entirely new to the band either.

Band teacher Richard Mancini started this tradition in the fall of 2003. It is part of their “Jericho” march around the football field to make the other team “fall down” like the Old Testament in the city of Jericho. Mancini got this idea from the UW Husky Marching Band.

The band playing during a halftime show. Courtesy. Lily Dozier

We do it as a show of sportsmanship to welcome the visiting fans to Doc Harris. And we did this before we had a winning team…win or lose, it makes no difference,” Mancini wrote in an email.

It may seem that the hard part of this is actually learning the other team’s fight songs. However, the students have no trouble learning them, as most of them are typical college fight songs that high schools share. For example, a common song other teams like to play is “On Wisconsin.” Other schools may not have this tradition, but the CHS band takes pride in their playing.

“We always practice it enough to play well; playing it in a sloppy manner would be disrespectful. I have a whole spreadsheet of all the teams we’ve played since 2003 (class 2A, 3A, and 4A), their mascots, and their fight songs,” Mancini wrote.

Some teams take this form of respect the wrong way, too.

“Their kids threw rolls of toilet paper at us when we stopped there. They thought we were going to play our fight song in their face, so they all started yelling and screaming—so loud, in fact, that they couldn’t hear we were playing their song! I told one of their students in the front, ‘They’re playing your song,’ but by the time he heard it and tried to tell his friends, the song was over. Kids are hilarious,” Mancini wrote.

 Of course, some schools take it better than others- for example, at a football game against Lakes High School, the band was received quite well.

“The Lakes HS fans all stood up, clapped, and sang along with the song, then cheered at the end,” Mancini wrote. “Their sportsmanship showed that they were from a successful program.”

Featured Image. Courtesy. Lily Dozier

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