Winter Guard? When did this happen?

Someone sent me this video of the Angola High School Winter Guard in Angola, Indiana performing to “Feed the Fire” by Happy Rhodes. Of course I’m thrilled and totally confused. I’d love to know who chose the music but I haven’t been able to track down that information yet. Beyond that, when did there start being competitions for Winter Guard? Is it a fairly recent thing? I went to a small high school in Kansas and there wasn’t anything like this then. It’s interesting, beyond of course the fact that someone in Indiana has impeccable taste in music!

(Sorry, I’m on a Touch and can’t do a proper link)

The band leader no doubt chose the music. Of course, you could always ask them…

My daughter was in Winter Guard. A Winter Guard competition is kind of a surreal experience. The costumes, the music, the sets. It seems like the winner is chosen on the basis of which is the most bizarre. You have to go to one to appreciate just how weird the whole thing is.

Winter Guard competitions have been around since the late '70s. Most people not familiar with the activity would be amazed and how big it is now. The championship competion for WGI (Winter Guard International) is a three day event that takes palce at three different venues including the University of Dayton arena. Hundreds of groups compete in a number of categories. Check out

Thanks for the information guys. I graduated in the mid '70’s so I was right, it wasn’t around yet. When I get my computer fixed I’ll look at more videos. Here’s a whole new world I never knew existed. I remember when I saw Drumline and was so surprised that such a competition existed. Learn something new every day.

Your link didn’t work for me. Is this it?

I was a member of the Carroll High School Winter Color Guard in 1990, and we took 4th at WGI in Buffalo.

Of note:[ul][li]I’m male[/li][li]I did not march, dance, twirl, or otherwise do much of anything you would consider “guard-ish”[/li][li]The 16+ girls on the floor did do those things[/li][li]The six guys were on the floor pushing wheeled carts with arched hoops that the girls actually danced on, some stationary, some while it was moving[/li][li]I had to hold a regulation-sized flag (tiny, but met the minimum size) for a certain amount of time[/li][li]The six guys were, for the most part, completely hidden the entire show[/li][li]They changed a great many rules after that year :)[/li][/ul](this was also the first year that many schools and adult WG’s started using floor-coverings, which proved very interesting)

I competed in winter guard back in the 80’s. My group actually won first place in our class in 1980 at Syracuse. It was great fun and, all these years later, I’m still very close with one of my teammates. I would highly recommend the activity for any high school student. It fosters team work as well as any traditional team sport, requires some real coordination, and is great exercise.

Wait, I thought that the Winter Guard was an elite Russian military group. There’s a marching band-esque definition, too?

Winter guard at my high school was pretty much just the girls who flag-twirled in marching band, plus some of the girls who played instruments in marching band (and a few gay guys). No outsiders were apprised of its existence. And I graduated in 2003. It still seems a very insular “sport,” knowledge of which is largely limited to people in marching band.

Looks like the Angola Winter Guard did pretty well, getting Best In State. Does that mean they compete nationally?

See, I was in marching band in high school and undergrad, and this is still the first I’ve heard of it. Is it new, in the past decade or so?

It seems to combine elements of Show Choir (without singing), Marching Band (without instruments), Rhythmic Gymnastics (without Gymnastics) - with fake weapons.