Working from home? Switch to the DIGITAL edition of School Band & Orchestra. CLICK HERE to signup now!

Travel/Festivals

  • What Have We Learned from COVID-19?

    Tom Merrill | January 8, 2021

    Friday, November 13, 2020. I’m not superstitious. That’s a lie. I’m a Chicago Cubs fan. Eight months since the last Friday the 13th. March 13th. The end of that week. It’s really only been ten months?

    Read More...
  • Weathering the Perfect Storm Together

    Tom Merrill | April 30, 2020

    You walk into a restaurant. You’re seated, handed a menu, and you make a selection with your waiter. A few minutes later your meal is served, you enjoy your food, and pay on the way out. Now imagine: You walk into a restaurant. Only this time, you’re planning a banquet. You’re seated with your waiter and the chef, who ask what you would like. They’re going to create this especially for you—the sky’s the limit. It’s going to take months to plan and assemble, but it’s going to be amazing.

    Read More...
  • A Better Approach to a Bid Process

    Tom Merrill | January 10, 2020

    The email arrived on a Monday. “Dear Travel Planner:” These never end well.

    Read More...
  • Is Wind Band’s Moment Finally Here?

    Tom Merrill | June 6, 2019

    I spent the first weekend of May 2019 in the usual annual place: Band Geek Nirvana.

    Read More...
  • The Benefits of Being a Little Nerdy

    Tom Merrill | May 8, 2019

    In the April/May 2018 issue of Choral Director, SBO’s sister magazine, I wrote a piece entitled “The Importance of Our Ancestry,” which discussed the value of knowing the leading conductor/educators in our field.

    Read More...
  • History of the Joliet Township High School Band: Part Five — “Community”

    Tom Merrill | April 10, 2019

    Last month, we shared the challenges of changing times and community. In our final installment, we share the legacy that continues through community support.

    Read More...
  • History of the Joliet Township High School Band Part Four—“Challenges and Successes”

    Tom Merrill | March 1, 2019

    Last month, we shared how the Joliet program maintains their long tradition. This month, we discuss the challenges of changing times and the successes born of determination and hard work. In 1964, with the town population booming, Joliet Township split into three high schools: East, Central, and West.

    Read More...
  • How to Compare Tour Offerings

    Elaine Koutsulis Laird | March 1, 2019

    There are many companies offering student tours….so how do you choose?

    Read More...
  • History of the Joliet Township High School Band – Part Three: “Making It Happen”

    Tom Merrill | February 8, 2019

    Last month we continued the history of the Joliet Township program and its influences.

    Read More...
  • History of the Joliet Township High School Band Part Two: “A Sound Tradition”

    Tom Merrill | January 10, 2019

    Last month we introduced you to the directors of the Joliet Township High School band, and the lineage that links the present with the origin of the program a century ago. This month we continue the history with those that have shaped and influenced its course.

    Read More...
  • History of the Joliet Township High School Band Part One — “Family”

    Tom Merrill | December 4, 2018

    It all started with a pig. It was somewhere around 1895, and a 14-year old farm teen in Jackson Township, Illinois wanted a new cornet.

    Read More...
  • Bid Should Be a Four-Letter Word

    Tom Merrill | November 4, 2018

    As a travel planner, it’s the phrase I always dreaded hearing on the other end of the phone: “The school makes me bid this out.”

    Read More...
The Latest News and Gear in Your Inbox - Sign Up Today!