Alabama’s Million Dollar Band trying to beat the heat

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) — The University of Alabama Million Dollar Band is preparing for football season.

For the past several weeks, band members have spending hours rehearsing. Lately, the band is practicing more at night to avoid the dangerous heat.

Sarah Nelson is a UA band member who plays the trombone.

“It makes it real tough but the band is really good with our drill bags and our water is right on us and we can get a drink whenever we need,” Nelson said. “They give us a lot of breaks which is really nice and we have all our teammates out here supporting us allowing us to push through and it’s really a great environment that allows us to stay out in this heat.”

Band director Ken Ozzelo said band members take frequent water breaks. There are 400 students in the band including the Color Guard and the Crimsonettes.

“We are very diligent about stressing to our members to stay hydrated. We talk about getting hydrated before rehearsal and while they are here and they actually carry their water bottle with them,” Ozzelo said.

Nelson says she and fellow band mates are not going to let hot weather keep them from having fun and being the best band in the nation.

“Being in the Million Dollar Band last year really helps lift my spirit for the school and for the sport of football. The environment is fantastic, we are all supportive and cheer each other on and we play amazing music which doesn’t hurt.”

The first performance for the Million Dollar Band is Aug. 31 in Atlanta when the Crimson Tide takes on Duke University.

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