Marching Band

The Bishop Watterson Marching Eagles officially began in the fall of 1982 and since then, have become one of the premier catholic school marching programs in the State of Ohio. From it's first season in uniforms acquired from Thomas Worthington High School to it's current uniform, their 4th since then, the Watterson marching band has been a very active and visible part of the Bishop Watterson instrumental music department and community. The band started to compete in OMEA local shows in 1986 and have qualified for the OMEA State Marching Band Finals every year since 1987, receiving superiors ten of those years as well as numerous awards at the local level. In 1994, the band also started to compete in the Bands of America (BOA)circuit and in 2003 the band entered the Mid-States Circuit(MSBA). For the first three years in MSBA, the band has been in the top four each of those years. The Watterson Band has also traveled extensively to various national events such as bowl games and parades. They participated in the Philadelphia and Chicago Holiday Parades, the Hall of Fame Bowl, Outback Bowl, Peach Bowl, Citrus Bowl three times, and Disney Magic Music Days in Orlando, Florida numerous times.

OMEA vs. MSBA:  A Primer on the Differences

The Watterson Marching Band participates in two different circuits; OMEA (Ohio Music Education Association) and MSBA (Mid-States Band Association).  There are differences between the two on how bands are judged and classified.  


  • Band classification is determined by school size, not band size.  From smallest school to largest:  C, B, A, and AA.  
  • Bands can compete in a higher class but not lower.
  • There are nine judges on the panel.  Music(2), Visual Performance, Visual Effect, General Effect(2), Perussion, and Color Guard(2)
  • The point scale is based on 300 total points.  To receive an overall superior (I), a band must recieve a minimum of 4 superiors (color guard not included)
  • I=superior, II=excellent, III=good, IV=fair, V=poor
  • A band must qualify to participate in the State Marching Band Finals
  • OMEA Website


  • Band classification is determined by band size.  From smallest to largest:  A, AA, AAA, AAAA, and Open.
  • Bands can compete in a higher class but not lower.
  • There are seven judges on the panel.  Music General Effect(2), Visual General Effect, Music Performance, Visual Performance, Percussion, and Color Guard
  • The point scale is based on 100 points total.  No ratings are given.
  • To compete at the Mid-States championships, a band must participate in one local MSBA contest.   
  • MSBA Website

For more information about OMEA and MSBA contests, see "A Quick Guide to Marching Band Contests."