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Irish finish sixth in regional marching band competition

The RHS marching band placed sixth at the Bands of America Super Regional Band Championships in St. Louis.

The Rosemount High School marching band made another trip to finals over the weekend at the Bands of America Super Regional Band Championships at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis.

The Irish finished first place among Class AAA bands in preliminary competition and sixth overall in finals. The first five bands in finals have all been grand national finalist bands and one was a past national champion.

The St. Louis regional is the biggest competition Bands of America puts on outside of its national championship.

Rosemount's sixth place finish was the same result it had last year, but band director Steve Olsen said getting to the same place was a lot harder this time around. There were six more bands in the competition this year, and several bands that have made finals before did not advance this year.

"The quality of the groups was way up," Olsen said. "We feel very lucky to have made finals."

Rosemount did more than just advance. The band also won caption awards for outstanding visual performance and outstanding general effect in the preliminary round. Each band member received a medal for finishing first in Class AAA.

Classes are determined by enrollment. AAA was the second biggest. At least three of the top bands in the finals were from Class AAAA. In an email to band members and their families Olsen said Rosemount's two performances in St. Louis were the band's best of the year.

"We are ecstatic, excited and proud of our students," Olsen said Tuesday. "They performed extremely well on the field and off the field."

A large cheering section made the trip to support Rosemount. Olsen estimated 350 to 400 Rosemount bakers bought tickets.

Rosemount had a score of 80.65 in the finals. The winning band from Oklahoma's Owasso High School scored 87.60.

The Irish were the highest-placed Minnesota band in the competition.

Last weekend's result wraps up a season in which the Irish were once again named the best marching band in the Minnesota State Fair parade and won the Minnesota state marching band title for the seventh straight time.