Club offers a chance to give marching a go

The Phoenix Marching Introductory team (from left) Sapphire Tainui, Zoe Walker, Charlotte Thwaites, Briana Gibson and Annabel Heslin. Photo: Supplied

PHOENIX Marching will fling the Waihopai School Hall doors wide open on May 22 to give the public the opportunity to try the sport.

Phoenix marching coach Sheree Hall said the club was hoping to increase the number of children involved in the sport and expand the club.

“Just come down and have a look to see if it’s something the kids would be interested in.”

The commitment involved was not intense, she said.

“Practice is once a week for the younger ones, and twice a week for older grades.

Competitions were held on Sunday mornings until mid-afternoon during spring and summer.

The sport offered both South Island for under-12s and national competitions for over 12s.

Introductory and Kiwi grades were non-competitive grades which helped those new to the sport develop their skills.

The sport was great for fitness, developing positive friendships and community, especially with the older team members being good role models for the younger members.

“It gives the young girls someone to look up to who has a positive influence on their life.

“It also gives the girls the opportunity to travel throughout the country.”

Phoenix is one of four active marching groups in Southland.

The New Zealand History website says competitive and team marching first became popular in the 1930s, when teams of young women from the armed forces, factories, shops, and other workplaces around the country extended formation marching from a team game to an activity in its own right.

Local marching associations formed and the national organisation was founded in 1943.

  • The Phoenix Marching Teams’ Have a Go Day is on Sunday, May 22, 10.30am-noon. To find out more, go to the Phoenix Marching Team Facebook page.