All-American Cyclone: Bowers prepares for weekend performance in San Antonio

Published 3:21 pm Thursday, January 4, 2018

Texas may be more known for their twisters, but one Cyclone is currently in the Lonestar State and looking to put an emphatic stamp on her high school career.
Elizabethton High School senior and Betsy Band member Courtney Bowers was recently selected as a U.S. Army All-American Marching Band member and is one of only 125 high school marching band members from across the country that will perform at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, on Saturday, Jan. 6, at noon (CST) during the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl presented by American Family Insurance. Bowers will be part of the Color Guard during the event.
According to information provided by All-American Games, the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has severed as the nation’s “premier” high school all-star event and football game and has served as a launching pad for various NFL and collegiate stars, including Andrew Luck, Tim Tebow and Eric Berry. The All-American Bowl consistently draws an annual crowd upwards of 40,000 to the Alamodome and is the most-watched high school sporting event of each year, with 5.1-million viewers tuning in to last year’s broadcast.
The event has also proved to be vital for band members, according to Lee Rosenburg with All-American Games.
During the official ceremony to name Bowers an All-American in October, Rosenburg said this weekend’s event has served as the perfect launching pad for marching band members, with several going on to participate in national-winning groups.
Students are selected by exhibiting a variety of traits, Rosenburg added, including “exceptional citizenship, marching achievement, character, and leadership.”
Bowers, who has been busy at work in Texas preparing for the event, told the Elizabethton Star Tuesday night that the trip has been enjoyable for countless reasons.
“The experience has been phenomenal so far,” Bowers said. “It is such an honor to have the chance to be here with such dedicated people. There are too many stories to tell. The most memorable story so far probably has to be meeting all of the color guard members for the first time. They are all so incredibly talented, and such great people.”
With the Betsy Band, under the direction of Director Perry Elliott, Bowers has experienced state championships and other accolades, but noted this week has been a bit a different compared to action in Northeast Tennessee.
“The process to prepare for this week was to watch a bunch of videos of our show choreography and memorize it,” she said. “A majority of work is learned this week. Since everyone is here giving 150 percent constantly, it is great working with everyone. We all care so much about what we do, we make it our number one priority to make sure we just do our best to show our appreciation for the Army.”
As attention continues to be shifted to Saturday, Bowers also took time to reflect on her high school career.
“It’s honestly so sad to think this is my last chance to perform another show in high school but there isn’t another way I would want to go out,” she said. “Meeting new people and coming together to create a whole show in a week is a crazy thing to do, but worth every second.”
The halftime show for the game will be broadcasted from the All-American Games YouTube account – The game will be televised on NBC beginning at noon (CST) with viewers potentially having the chance to catch the band, and Bowers, on TV. The video of the performance will be uploaded to the YouTube account one hour after being performed live.
Even though sights are focused on Saturday, Bowers already has a gameplan for the future.
“After high school, I plan to attend ETSU and major in Special Education,” she said. “ I’m also considering joining the marching band and being a member of their color guard. Later I plan to join a drum corps, that’s probably my biggest dream.”

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