With over a century as part of the University of Dayton, the hard-working Pride of Dayton marching band is a major source of school spirit and athletic entertainment for the Flyer community.
Also called POD, Pride of Dayton is entering its 108th year of existence, according to POD director Tremon Kizer. Over the years, in addition to the band, POD has come to include the Flyerettes dance team, twirlers and most recently,
With student members from UD, Wright State and Sinclair Community College, POD is a diverse student organization. Along with the opportunity to improve their performance skills, students get to meet other students from different majors and backgrounds as well. Besides performing at every home football game and one away game each season, POD performs during high school football games, volleyball games and travels occasionally around the country for music performances. According the POD website, recent travels have included Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Jacksonville and Chicago. Anyone interested in joining POD can register for the one hour credit course MUS 390. POD holds auditions for its Flyerette dance team, color guard and twirlers each spring.
In addition to being at football games at Welcome Stadium all day on Saturdays, there are multiple practices per week.
“The typical week comprises of us rehearsing three times for an hour and a half,” Kizer said. “We watch videos of our weekend performance and rehearse music on Mondays, Wednesdays we go outside and work on marching, execution, music. Fridays, we do final preparations before our football games or we travel to performances we might have.”
Members of POD learn music and drills during band camp, which takes place during the summer before classes begin. It’s no wonder that with all this practice the members of POD become very close.
“We’re a very close knit group,” said Hannah Petko-Bunney, a junior chemical engineering major. Petko-Bunney says that previous band experience before college drove her to participate in POD.
“I did marching band in high school and wanted to continue in college,” she said. “I’ve met my best friends in POD and have been in POD for three years,” Petko-Bunney said.
POD is a large commitment for any student, but definitely a rewarding one.
“Football games are a joy for us to attend and perform at,” Kizer said. “The students have fun, the crowd enjoys what the marching band does and we love sitting beside the student body cheering the Flyers on to victory.”
With about 150 members, POD continues to grow and plays a big role in fostering school spirit at athletic events and throughout the UD community.
For more information about POD, contact the department of music