Welcome to the 2010 marching band season!
Filed under: — Dan Balash @ 12:01 am

Welcome, students, parents, directors, and fans to the 2010 season!!

Welcome  to ILMarching.com.  We have been gearing up for the 2010 season (our 7th full season), and we hope you all have as well. A lot has been going on here at ILMarching during the off season including a complete redesign of the database.  A tremendous thanks to all of our volunteers Katy Boggs, Robert Kreml, and Adam Rusek who graciously donated their time with inputting scores and old festival schedules.   We definitely could not do this without you.

We have not had an update in a while and we thought we would share with everyone what has been going on, the rules around here, and some new things we will be doing throughout the season.
1.)  New this year:  We are allowing anyone to start a new topic.  This will be on a trial basis.  If the administration doesn’t feel that it is working, this privilege will be removed and it will go back to people with 5 or more posts.  New members:  We are aware that email validation does not always get through on all email servers.  Please email Dan if this happens, and he will take care of it immediately.

2.) We reserve the right to delete your posts, or delete everything you’ve said and replace it with something we want to say. If you want to be sure you’re safe, PM an admin or a moderator before you post.

3.) You are not anonymous on this forum. We have every single poster’s e-mail address and IP address(es). With under 5 minutes of work, we can locate who you are and where you have posted from, usually within a couple of city blocks.  If you wouldn’t say it in front of your own band director, you probably shouldn’t say it at all.

4.) Band directors get special treatment on these forums. If you’re a band director and you have any sort of feedback/concerns, e-mail me directly. I strongly prefer that you e-mail from your school account, so that I can be sure you are who you say you are.  In addition, if you are an educator and you post on the message boards, please PM me or email me so I can change your account status.

For all the rules, visit the Message Board Guidelines at http://s8.zetaboards.com/ilmarching/boardrules/.

Now, we’re done with the rules.  On to the fun stuff of marching band, and some new features.

1.) Each bands’ page has been updated to include their show title for the 2010 season.  Do you know if your band has their repertoire listed for this year?  Check http://www.ilmarching.com/bands_check.php to find out. If your band is in red, you do not have a 2010 show listed with us.  PM Mark or I, email one of us, post it on the forums, or use our new Info Submission pages: http://www.ilmarching.com/submit_band_info.php

2.) New this year:  We have submission forms that make it easier on everyone.  You can send your information on your band’s 2010 show/past information, festivals, and scores.  Visit:


3.) We are going to be doing predictions for most (if not all)  shows in Illinois this season just like last year.  Those will be posted on Wednesday each week.

4.) We might have some new features this year.  More information to come!

5.) Anyone who writes a review of a show can send those to us, and we will post the reviews.  The reviews must be unbiased. We had a few reviews last year if you want a reference.

6.) We will be updating scores for each show as usual. So that means if you have official scores for a show, email them to us. The quicker we have them, the quicker they will be posted on the site.  They will also be posted on Twitter and the Facebook Fan Page.

Which brings me to the next point:  Illinois Marching Online will continue in the frightening world of Web 2.0.  We are on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.  We will use Twitter to update scores of whatever shows the staff is at, plus news going on around the state.  We’ll also use the Facebook Fan Page to update users of scores as well.  Tell your friends that use the site to become fans of the Illinois Marching Online page as well!!  We have also added a link to our fan page on the left side of the main page.

Here’s the links to each site:

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/ilmarching

To follow the ilmarching updates on your cell phone, text the following to 40404:  Follow ilmarching.

Note: Standard text messaging rates do apply.

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/ilmarching

Facebook Group Page: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=40992838496

Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Illinois-Marching-Online/64742541413?ref=ts

Continuing  this year is the CafePress online store, where you can get all of your wares with the Illinois Marching Online logo on it.  Great gift for others or yourself.  Spot others wearing the same shirt!  You can visit the CafePress store here: http://www.cafepress.com/ilmarching.

Videos: A couple of years ago we introduced our partnership with Quick Draw Films to provide video of Illinois Marching Bands. When it was first introduced, we simply directed you to our YouTube channel, where a few videos have been posted. Last year, we revamped the video section, and added some more videos from past seasons. That new page is located at: target= http://www.ilmarching.com/videos.php, or you can click the Videos link in the menu bar.  When you first load the page, you will notice it is similar to a tv channel, where something is always playing. With this, we have the capability to do live feeds from a few shows…and hopefully we will be able to do that. But for all those other times when there isn’t a live feed, you can either watch what is playing, or you can use the On Demand feature of the player. To get there, you can either click the ‘On Demand’ Button at the bottom, or the ‘Menu’ button on the right of the player. There you can select the show, and then the band that you want to watch. We hope everyone enjoys this section!

Illinois Marching Online has always been, and will forever be a free site for its’ users.  Keep in mind, however, the people that run this site are volunteers who have donated (and will continue to) hours upon hours of manpower to this site to make it what it is today.  Mark completely redesigned the database over the off-season, making it so much more powerful.  Some volunteers and the staff added all the scores that were in the database, as well as all the old schedules into the new format.  We are currently in the process of adding old scores that were not in the database.  We currently have 269 scores in the database, and 5,084 rows of information in regards to these scores.

Thank yous go out to Midwest Marching and Greg Stevens at http://www.boahistory.org.

Everything comes out of pocket for the site: hosting fees, advertising fees, tickets, gas, among other various items.  If you like what you see, would you please consider donating with PayPal?  There’s also a donation button on each of the main pages.  If you do not have a credit card, and still wish to donate, we can work something out.  Email Dan to discuss this.  We understand times are difficult, and we will definitely appreciate any contribution that you make.  In addition, as our way of saying “thank you,” we will have different levels of contribution, where the staff will give different items to thank you for donating to us.  You will also be publicly thanked on the site as well.

Thank you to Paul Katula who donated to the site last year, and did so again this year.  Thank you, Paul!  Your generosity is greatly appreciated.

The redesign of the database has allowed us to put brand new features into the website for everyone’s enjoyment! Here are some details on those changes:

Visual Design: A big thanks goes out to Chris Klaus, who redesigned some of the graphics for the site, including the main banner. The look of the site has never been better!!

Festivals: The festival’s page has been redesigned to include more information. As always, from the festival page, you can read a short description of the event, as well as see the contact information. Below that is a new section for links to Scores. There will be a link to that year’s score when it is available. There are now also links to every score from that festival for every year. In the past we only linked to the current, and 1 previous year score. Now you can get to any year’s score from one page. Below that is the schedule of bands to perform. While this looks the same as it used to, it is much more powerful. If the band listed in the schedule is in our database, that name is now a link to that band’s page. With this, we can easily keep track of which bands attended which shows in a given year. The biggest addition to Festivals is the inclusion of Google Maps. Every festival in 2010, and later, has an address where it is being held. We are now displaying that address on a Google Map so that it is easier to find the festival. If you need driving directions, there is a link for that too. Note: The driving directions require Firefox or Chrome to work. The function that “senses” your current location only works in those browsers for now.

Bands: The bands page is similar to the old page, with a few additions. You can see right off the bat, that we have also added Google Maps to show you where the school is located for a particular band. Also, we are saving and displaying IHSA Enrollment figures. We use these figures to determine the IMO Division when it comes to Bands of the Year time, but many festivals use Enrollment figures to determine performance class. The biggest changes come in the “Repetoire Selection” part. For each year you select, not only will you get the show title that band played, but you will get a detailed listing of awards. These awards now auto-update with each new score added…no more waiting around for a staff member to manually add awards. Using the awards section, you have links to the Festival Information for each festival a band attended that year, as well as a link to that festivals scores so see how that band did.

Scores: The only change to scores is that we now store each bands score individually. This allows us to save the actual number of the score, as well as provide a link to the Band page of the band that obtained the score.

Compare Bands: A new page that is available is the Compare Bands page. This page will compare the scores of two or more bands in a given year. Simply go to the page and select the number of bands you want, and the year to compare. The page will then look in the database for every score each band obtained that year, and display them side by side for easy comparison. Soon, a link to this page will be put on each band’s page…so you can easily compare the band you are viewing with another. Note: This page only compares Field scores, as for the most part, is what a majority of our scores are.

Well everyone, again, we are glad you are here.  Stay tuned throughout the season for the latest scores and reviews and good luck to all of the bands in Illinois. We at Illinois Marching Online hope everyone has a fun, safe, and successful season.

As usual, if anyone has any suggestions for any improvements, suggest them to Dan or Mark.
The Illinois Marching Online Staff

Staff Emails:


Dan Balash-guaranteed response time within 12-24 hours.

Mark Overholt


Kurt Antonini
Paul Strain
John Donovan

Andrew Beckwith
Chris Klaus

(full article)