The event offers a free concert for audience members while supporting Northwood School music students.
Margaret Howard, 17, of Gordon is coordinating the musical showdown for her senior exit project.
“I think it’s a good way for people to get their music out into the community, out to other people, and then to also hear what other people are playing in the area,” she said.
It’s also a chance for Howard, a Northwood senior, to give back to the school’s music department.
“I played music every single year I’ve been at Northwood,” said Howard, who sings in the choir and plays baritone saxophone. “It’s always been my favorite class.”
The passion she developed for music at Northwood is paving the path for her future.
“I’m actually going into music education after I graduate high school,” Howard said.
She hopes to raise enough through event sponsorships, donations and entry fees to renovate the Northwood music room. She’d like to add new carpeting, paint and a whiteboard, as well as purchase new music for students. Over the last decade, the senior said, the only change made to the room was when students took a few things off the wall.
Margaret Howard of Gordon, left, leads the Northwood School pep band. Howard plans to raise money for the school’s music department while showcasing local musicians as part of her senior project, the Up North Battle of the Bands, which takes place Aug. 9 at the Lucius Woods Performing Arts Center. (Submitted Photo)
“A more welcoming environment will hopefully just allow the department to grow,” Howard said.
A minimum of 16 hours is required for a senior exit project at Northwood. To date, Howard has put in twice that. Her biggest challenge has been getting the word out in bigger cities like Superior, Rice Lake and Duluth.
The Up North Battle of the Bands is open to all musicians high school age and older, vocal or instrumental, solo or in a group. It’s their chance to shine.
“I just want to see a mixture of all ages and all instruments and genres just coming together,” Howard said. “Because in this area, I feel like a lot of times music does get overlooked and more emphasis is put on different activities and sports. I just want it to be an enjoyable event for everyone to get together and listen to all kinds and variety of music.”
Everyone is welcome to visit the park Aug. 9 to watch the battle. There is no admission fee.