NEW CUMBERLAND, Pa. - The West Shore Marching Band stepped out onto the field in harmony. Not so long ago, members barely knew each other. About half of the members go to Red Land and the other half go to Cedar Cliff. The schools are rivals. Due to a decrease in membership, the bands had to merge.
"In order to maintain the kinds of experiences we want to give our students here in West Shore, this was the solution," said band director, Rob Starrett.
"I was opposed to the merger. I just didn't see how it was going to work out logistically," said drum major Leah Munn.
They began practicing together in June and ran into few issues.
"It's gone great. No one can tell the difference with who's who. We are just one big family," said drum major, Caitlin Gilmore.
"Everything worked out. Everything we thought would go wrong really didn't happen," added Munn.
In order to make the merger work, the band will only play at homes games. The only exception is if both Red Land and Cedar Cliff are away. In that case, they will pick a game to travel to.
"That's one of the drawbacks, I guess, in some regards to this merger," said Starrett.
"It's a little discouraging because I would like to root on our football team, but as long as we are together as a band, that's all that really matters," added Gilmore.
They haven't decided what they will do for the rivalry game when Red Land takes of Cedar Cliff.