Summer break doesn't mean vacation for all Dublin City School District students.

Summer break doesn't mean vacation for all Dublin City School District students.

At each Dublin high school, students spend many summer days practicing marching and music in preparation for parades, football games and competition.

For Taylor Bungard, practice with the Scioto Marching Band will mark the beginning of her high school experience.

Tryouts got her a spot playing snare drum in the marching band for her freshman year.

Although she's been dreaming of being a percussionist since the fourth grade, Bungard's ambitions didn't always lead to marching band.

"In elementary school we did all these weird things like playing the piano and one day we did the drums," she said.

"Ever since the fourth grade I knew I wanted to be a percussionist."

Marching band came later, however, even after the heavy drums she'll have to march with weighed on her decision.

"I thought they were too heavy and I can't do it," she said, "but I changed my mind."

Marching band began for Bungard this week as the group met for practice before the Independence Day Celebration parade and will continue with more practice and band camp in August.

"I'm not really worried about it," she said of the August camp in Jackson, Ohio.

"I'm excited for a new adventure," Bungard said. "I think about this summer as being a giant adventure."

For senior trumpet player Max Wylie, however, band camp won't bring many surprises.

"Band camp is hot and sweaty and icky and sometimes tensions run high," he said.

"It is a very rewarding experience and despite all the drawbacks the experience is necessary ... It serves a purpose to start the show and learn so much in a short period of time."

The benefits of band camp, however, are apparent especially when Wylie was a freshman.

"You're forced into spending hours upon hours with people you don't know very well," he said.

"It feels natural and unnatural. ... My freshman year I barely knew anyone.

"There were a few people in my section I knew. I remember walking to a big tree and not knowing what to do.

"Some seniors walked up and started talking to me. It speaks to the kind of people that join the band and really do care and are interested in everyone there."

As a senior, Wylie said he's looking forward to helping freshmen the way upperclassmen helped him when he joined the band.

"I think marching band for many kids is an opportunity to make friends and enter the high school social world a little bit before high school starts and kind of build a bridge of that high school idea and package in an easy, integrated way and not just be dumped into it the first day," he said.

"I loved the experience my freshman year. Not only do I want to be a part of other kids' experiences, but I made friends that I value and I look forward to having that experience again."

Bungard is also looking forward to her first marching band experiences.

"I'm definitely nervous about the whole experience, but I think it will be worth the time and the effort," she said.

"I was a swimmer, but I abandoned four years to be in marching band. I think it will be worth it."