Hebron Will Not Attend Grand Nationals, and Other News

Hebron Will Not Attend Grand Nationals, and Other News

About a month ago, we got this email from a reader named Nathaniel:

“So I've been around the Hebron community for years and years, but I would just like to hear your opinion on their show last year. Also, what is your prediction on how their show will do next year?” 

Our site’s stance on Hebron’s show is very clear (we thought their show was fantastic), but the future of the program is even more intriguing, especially with rumors swirling about the possibility of a Grand Nationals trip in 2014. If they were to go, it would be the group's first Grand Nationals trip ever. Will Hebron have a chance to win Grand Nationals in their first visit? No. Will Hebron be able to continue their BOA success after such an incredible season? Yes.

Unfortunately, while the nation is excited to see how the Hebron Band performs in 2014, no one will able to see that in Indianapolis. Despite previous rumors that Hebron had plans to attend Grand Nats, we can say with complete certainty that the Hebron band will not be attending Grand Nationals in 2014. This is due to a number of reasons including money. It's not cheap to transport a band the size of Hebron the 900 miles to Lucas Oil Stadium. The students are rather disappointed as would be expected, especially after all the excitement of their 2013 season. Regardless, Hebron has much to look forward to in 2014 with the UIL 5A State championship in Texas. We can't wait to see how they fare throughout the season.

Another band not going to Grand Nationals in 2014 is Vandegrift. According to a series of posts on the official BOA forums, the students at Vandegrift voted for a non-competitive trip instead of Grand Nats. This is good news for bubble bands and Class 3A bands, but bad news for those who love great bands. Bubble bands like Dobbyns-Bennett, Franklin, Center Grove, Plymouth-Canton, and others who are expected to attend Grand Nationals now have increased chances of earning one of the last few finals spots that would have most likely gone to Vandy or Hebron.

Rumors Swirling about Lassiter Possibly Making a Grand Nationals Appearance
There are many rumors circulating in the BOA world about the possibility of Lassiter making a trip to Grand Nats. While we have not been able to confirm this information with any reliable sources, we thought it might be interesting to speculate about how Lassiter would do. Fair warning: our predictions might sound kind of grim.

If they go, we believe that Lassiter will not make finals at Grand Nationals in 2014. We don’t even think they’re necessarily a lock for one of the Top 22 spots going in to Semifinals. While their show last year was good and it was nice seeing them win again on the BOA circuit, the competition at BOA Towson was similar to the competition at BOA Winston-Salem, where Dobbyns-Bennett won with a very inflated score. DB's much cleaner, polished semifinals show only put them in 21st and we believe Lassiter would have a rather similar fate. Imagine the uproar within the Lassiter community if they placed that low in 2014! Remember that their last two trips were 1998 and 2002, and both times, they won. Could you imagine what the reaction would be like if Lassiter went to Grand Nationals and didn’t even make semifinals? It's unlikely, but we think that going to Grand Nationals this year would be a mistake for Lassiter.

If they don’t go, Lassiter should go to the BOA Atlanta Super Regional and start rebuilding their reputation in their own backyard against other fantastic Cobb County groups like Harrison, Kennesaw Mountain, and George Walton, while also competing against other great groups from the Southeast like Tarpon Springs. Making finals at this event could help them ease back in to the increased competition level of Super Regional events and then in a couple years Grand Nationals. This is the right move for the Lassiter band program.

As the rumors about what events bands across the country are attending continue to make the rounds, the staff at HornRank will continue to keep everyone informed. If you would like to share what events your band is attending next season, tweet us @HornRank or email us tips@hornrank.com.