Band Camp

A week-long Band Camp is held annually in late July/early August. Band members (both incoming and returning) are expected to attend band camp, where marching routines and music for the pre-game and first show are learned and practiced.  Camp culminates in a Saturday morning performance at 11 AM for band parents to show off these newly learned skills.

Dates for the 2021 Band Camp are August 2-7.

Band Camp

Band camp is hard, intense, and fun.

The first fall performance of the Golden Bear Marching Band occurs shortly after school restarts in August. To be ready for the first performance, the band begins rehearsals  in late July. The goals of the pre-camp rehearsals at school include learning the fundamentals of marching. During the week of band camp at Camp Swoneky, we will use the fundamentals taught to learn the pregame, maneuvers, and halftime show(s). During band camp, the unit becomes a team. We work together and get to know each other.

Camp Swoneky

Camp Swoneky is located at 605 Middleboro Road, Oregonia, Ohio 45054. The camp telephone number is 513-932-1794. The telephone should only be used in vital emergencies. The camp is not equipped with staff who are able to take messages or retrieve students. Please only use this telephone number in emergencies.

Camp Swoneky is a summer camp run by the Salvation Army. Swoneky stands for South West Ohio and North East Kentucky. The Salvation Army runs week long camps at Swoneky throughout most of the summer. The marching band has arranged to use the camp during the first free week after the Salvation Army programs. It is a beautiful camp and very appropriate for a marching band camp.


Much of what makes the band a cohesive unit comes outside of practice. The Seniors and Juniors organize activities including pool parties, dances, skit night, game night, senior dinner, etc., that are welcoming to new members and just plain fun.


Students sign up for cabins at the first rehearsals before we go to camp. Each cabin has two rooms that sleep 10 students each and one room that sleeps 8 students. Usually, students sign up for cabins with their friends and/or students from their class.


Busses are provided to transport the band to Camp Swoneky. Parents are responsible for picking up their student. Luggage will be loaded on school busses before departure. Large instruments are loaded on the band trailer. Space is limited for luggage and at camp. Please limit your luggage to one large suitcase.

Directions to Camp Swoneky

Take I-71 south to exit 36 (Wilmington Road). Exit east on to Wilmington Road and take an immediate right onto Middleboro Road. The camp is on Middleboro Road about 1 mile on the right. Look for the signs at the exit of I – 71. Driving time from Columbus is about a 1-1/4 hours.


We prefer students to self-medicate at band camp. Please complete this form if your student takes prescription medications, and send it with your student. (If you feel your student is unable to self-medicate, please contact the director to make alternative arrangements.) There will be a nurse at camp.

Parents’ Day at Camp and Coming Home

Parents and visitors are invited to come to camp on the final day for a special preview performance of the band at 11:00 AM Saturday Morning. The booster group also signs up volunteers at this time, so bring your calendars. After the performance, students will help load equipment and instruments on the trailer. All other luggage must return with the student and parents. A reminder email will be sent by boosters with additional details.

THERE IS NO BUS FROM CAMP TO UA – all students must be picked up.

Daily Schedule

A typical day at Camp Swoneky will follow this schedule:

7:00 Wake Up

8:00 Breakfast

9:00-11:30 Full Marching Practice

12:00 Lunch

1:00-2:00 Sectionals

2:00-4:00 Music Rehearsal

4:00-6:00 Memorization time

6:00 Dinner

7:00-9:00 Full Marching Practice

9:00-11:00 Organized Activities

11:30 Lights Out

What to Bring to Band Camp

-Bedding – a sleeping bag or sheets and a pillow. All beds are single beds



-Multiple functional pencils

-Folding Music Stand (optional for practice in the cabins)

-Clothes for 6 days of hot rehearsals

-Optional formal outfit (mostly seniors and juniors dress up) for senior dinner

-Good athletic shoes with socks are necessary. Sandals are not for marching (this includes Chacos). Consider packing an extra pair of shoes/socks for when they get wet with grass dew.

-Band t-shirts will be distributed at camp to be worn at the performance on Saturday. Pack black shorts from home for the performance.

-Jacket or sweat shirt for cool nights

-Swim suit

-Pen, small note pad


-Rain wear

-Bug spray or repellent

-Sun screen


-Toiletries (soap, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, etc.)

-Snacks, if you like

-Money for pop, if desired

-Each cabin may want to get together to arrange to bring a small fan or a small portable stereo

-Reusable Water Bottle

-Cell phones are permitted during appropriate times, but reception is limited

What Not to Bring to Band Camp

Bad Attitude



Game Systems

Air Conditioners

Hot Tubs


Jewelry or anything else of value


Energy drinks

If you have any questions – please email me at