HARRISBURG -- The Harrisburg High School Marching Band sweated through the past two weeks, preparing for what they expect will be a winning fall marching season.
The award-winning band stomped the competition last fall, winning each individual category and overall contest at parades throughout southern Illinois.
Band director Hannah Drake said this year's marching band is every bit as talented as last year's and will be in top form by the time the parade season starts.
The band could use a little help from the community, though.
In late December, the band's trailer, used to haul instruments and equipment to competitions and performances, was stolen. It was located quickly in neighboring Pope County, but the thieves had damaged the locked trailer in the process of opening it.
There were no band instruments inside. Rather, set pieces from "Seussical" for the school's theater group had been stored in the trailer. Those set pieces were mostly destroyed.
Members of the local community helped theater students rebuild the set so they could perform in the state's theater competition, which was successful.
The trailer, though, was considered a total loss. Due to a high insurance deductible and depreciation, the band got about $2,000 in the form of an insurance check.
"The problem is, we need another trailer, and it's going to cost about $9,000," Drake said.
So, once again, the band is appealing to the community for help raising funds to buy a new trailer. In the coming weeks, Drake said she will send letters to area businesses asking for donations.
"We have a very talented group of band students who really need a band trailer," Drake said. "And, we have a very supportive, generous community. We are asking for help from any business or individual who can help us get a new trailer. Any help will be greatly appreciated."
Drake may be reached by calling Harrisburg High School at (618) 253-7637.