- Associated Press - Thursday, August 21, 2014

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - University of Iowa marching band members are jazzed about their new $15 million practice facility.

The Hawkeye Marching Band used to rehearse on a field along Park Road, The Iowa City Press-Citizen reported (https://icp-c.com/1neNUMA ). Bad weather usually puts the nearly 250-member band behind schedule during its annual preseason camp, but students were able to rehearse inside on Wednesday.

The building features athletic turf with yard markers, and acoustic panels line the ceiling to enhance sound for the band. The new building also will be used for sports, including baseball, softball and soccer.

“It’s fantastic,” drum major Quentin Marquez said. “If you knew what it was like on Park Road, it was very hilly and hard to facilitate some of the things we needed to do. This facility is absolutely perfect, especially for this first week.”

Whittney Seckar-Anderson said, a baton twirler, said the Park Road practice field “was really rough with holes everywhere and uneven.”

“It’s good the university is paying attention to the band and we get this new facility,” Seckar-Anderson said.

Kevin Kastens, director for the Hawkeye Marching Band, said he feels “very confident” that the band’s performances will improve because of the facility.

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Information from: Iowa City Press-Citizen, https://www.press-citizen.com/

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