The 2013 edition of the Mardis Gras Drill Meet at Tulane University in New Orleans, LA. was a big success! Even thought the competition was spread out over the campus due to construction on the football field, all seemed to go fairly smoothly. The rain the had pounded the campus up to the Wednesday prior to the competition made for soggy Regulation Drill and Exhibition Drill fields. However, that did not stop the teams from executing great performances!
The picture at right is my with the cadet leadership and advisers of North Georgia University’s Blue Ridge Rifles. Unfortunately, the team could not come to the competition due to unforeseen issues, but it was great to meet these young men and their coaches!
At left, here I am with Joe Rivas and his wife, Lynn. Joe is the new head of Glendale Industries (www.paradestore.com). Joe and I shared a table that cadets and staff visited.
I spoke with team members, instructors, coaches, parents and exhibition drill fans throughout the day- it was a great honor to be the head judge for the exhibition drill phase along with GySgt Lopez from Pensacola, to be able to receive the report-in and out from each team commander and to offer each team these critiques. I hope my comments are helpful. If you have any questions at all, let me know through my contact page and I will do my best to answer/help.
Upload speeds were slow at the hotel- I made this article as quickly as I could!
Illinois at UC (click here to download Performance Critique) was first to perform. Their routine, all cadet created, introduced the team to rifle throwing with constant exchanges around the field.
The US Military Academy’s Black Knights (click here to download Performance Critique) took the field with complete dominance this year with a routine that was more intricate than in seasons past. I had the honor of getting a picture with the team just after the awards ceremony- at right.
The Air Force Academy’s Cadet Honor Guard Drill Team (click here to download Performance Critique) took the field and gave the Black Knights a run for the money.
The University of Florida (Air Force ROTC) (click here to download Performance Critique) came to the MGDM with ripples to please the eyes and, at one point, commands that were reminiscent of conflicts past when the military carried muskets.
The Citadel (click here to download Performance Critique) ended up splattered with mud on their white uniforms, but had a great performance.
Texas A&M University’s Fish Drill Team (click here to download Performance Critique) took the field with many changes to the traditional routine- and what a breath of fresh air! While much of the tradition is still very evident, the teams routine is much more effective than in years past. literally, everyone in the vicinity of Tulane’s LBC quad was stopped in their tracks outside watching the Fish! The picture is of the FDT after the awards while proud doting parents swarmed about clicking away.
Norwich University’s Shock Platoon (click here to download Performance Critique) came to perform with Fierce Pride!