125 Years of the Spirit and Sound of OSU

125 Years of Spirit and Sound of OSU

Emily Doherty

Every year, Reser Stadium fills with the familiar sounds of cheering fans, referee whistles and most importantly, “Hail to OSU”. For decades, the Oregon State Marching Band has been responsible for getting the crowd more than excited with our fight song and many of their other songs. 125 years of dedicated marching band members have put in countless hours of hard work, preparing for each and every game day. Rain or shine, the band is out performing before the game, during the game and even a bit after the game. This year, they proudly celebrate their 125th anniversary and continue their streak as the oldest marching band in the PAC-12. 

The marching band was formed in 1890 back when Oregon State was known as the Oregon Agriculture College. It was originally just a small, independent brass band with the students having to provide their own instruments. The band didn’t get to play at any football games until 1893 and they have been more than proud to be at every game since then. Throughout it’s time, the band developed a loyal base of instrumentalists willing to sacrifice the college game day experience for a shot of performing on the field.  The staff is beyond loyal too. Members from the community have volunteered their time to help direct, teach drills, and get the band where they are today. The band has only had seven directors over the course of its life. The current director, Olin Hannum, is an Oregon State University alumni and a former member of the band.  He and his staff decided that on October 8th, the Oregon State Marching band will celebrate its 125th season at the football game against Cal. The day after on Sunday, October 9th, there will be an anniversary concert in the LaSells Stewart Center at 1 p.m. that anyone can attend.

As a former marching band member myself, I’m proud to say I’ve been apart of the oldest marching band in the PAC-12. The sacrifices those students make to bring the spirit of Oregon State to life at events is something you can’t imagine unless you’ve marched a show in their shoes. It’s a roller coaster of emotions and physically demanding in all weather conditions that 125 years of students and staff have put themselves through, just to get people excited and feeling proud to be a Beaver fan.

So congratulations to the Oregon State University Marching band on 125 years of keeping the spirit and sound of OSU alive and thriving. GO BEAVS!