"" Writer's Wanderings: The Best Blind Band In The Land

Monday, September 23, 2019

The Best Blind Band In The Land

This weekend we headed a couple hours south to watch our grandson perform with his high school marching band both at a football game and at the band show that is hosted by his high school, Jonathan Alder. This year one of the bands participating in the band show on Saturday night billed themselves as "The Best Blind Band In The Land." I was naturally curious. Then I was completely amazed.

It's a small band from the Ohio School For The Blind in Columbus, Ohio. Not only does this amazing group of students overcome their visual impairment to learn the music and play the instruments, they do it all while learning some amazing formations as well. Several of the band members must have some visual sense but the majority were guided by aides walking behind them. Everyone marched in time to the music and no one missed a beat that was obvious.

The highlight came when it was announced that they would do Script Ohio (an Ohio State Marching Band signature) but in Braille. I found myself clapping and smiling and admiring the pluck of these kids and their aides. The aides helped several kids to form the Braille dots on the field and when the two who were the "i" marched into place, the music reached the familiar crescendo for the two to do the bow to "dot the i". The crowd went wild. The kids might not have been able to see everyone but they couldn't help but hear the roar and the foot stomping in the stands in a show of appreciation.

The Ohio School for the Blind has been in existence since 1837. A look at their website shows a lot of innovative methods of education that not only help the kids to learn but also give them an opportunity to experience much of what they would in a general population high school. Click on the link and be amazed. And pass the word to anyone who might need to find this great opportunity for their child.

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