Illinois Band Day

We are excited and proud to host a Marching Illini and Division of Intercollegiate Athletics tradition – the University of Illinois Band Day!  All high school band programs are invited and welcome to attend.  This exciting event allows high school students from across the state to interact, rehearse, and perform with the Nation’s Premier College Marching Band – The Marching Illini as well as the Faculty and Staff from the University of Illinois Bands in historic Memorial Stadium!



Registration is now open. Click HERE to register today.


Welcome to the 2019 University of Illinois Band Day!  We are excited you plan to join us on Saturday, September 14, 2019. Please read the following instructions to help facilitate the organization of this event.  On this page, you will find information regarding the day’s schedule, parking, seating, placement on the field, and additional general information.

Of course if you have additional questions, please feel free to contact us at 217.333.3025.


  • Auburn High School
  • Evergreen Park High School
  • Georgetown-Ridge Farm High School
  • Manteno High School
  • Oakwood High School
  • Pontiac Township High School
  • Rantoul Township High School
  • Reed-Custer High School
  • Ridgewood High School
  • Rochester High School
  • Roxana High School


  • Argenta-Oreana High School, IL
  • Auburn High School, IL
  • Bismarck-Henning Rossville-Alvin Cooperative High School, IL
  • Carmi-White County High School, IL
  • Central A&M High School, IL
  • Champaign Centennial High School, IL
  • Crete-Monee High School, IL
  • Eisenhower High School, IL
  • Fieldcrest High School, IL
  • Gardner South Wilmington High School, IL
  • Georgetown Ridge Farm High School, IL
  • Hall High School, IL
  • Jacksonville High School, IL
  • Lexington High School, IL
  • Manteno High School, IL
  • Maroa-Forsyth High School, IL
  • Mt. Vernon High School, IL
  • Oakwood High School, IL
  • Pana High School, IL
  • Reed-Custer High School, IL
  • Ridgewood High School, IL
  • Rochester High School, IL
  • Taylorville High School, IL
  • Thorton Fractional North High School, IL
  • Trico High School, Campbell Hill, IL
  • Tri-City CUSD #1 High School, IL
  • Westville High School, IL
  • Willowbrook High School, IL


  • Arcola High School, IL
  • Auburn High School, IL
  • Coal City High School, IL
  • Crete-Monee High School, IL
  • Eisenhower High School, IL
  • El Paso Gridley High School, IL
  • Elmwood Park High School, IL
  • Georgetown Ridge Farm High School, IL
  • Jacksonville High School, IL
  • Lexington High School, IL
  • Litchfield High School, IL
  • Marshall High School, IL
  • Metea Valley High School, IL
  • Mount Vernon Township High School, IL
  • North Central High School, IN
  • Pana High School, IL
  • Reed-Custer High School, IL
  • Ridgewood High School, IL
  • Rochester High School, IL
  • Rock Falls High Schoool, IL
  • Rushville Industry High School, IL


  • Argenta-Oreana High School
  • Bismarck-Henning High School
  • Cary-Grove High School
  • Downers Grove North High School
  • Eisenhower High School
  • Fieldcrest High School
  • Galesburg High School
  • Gardner South Wilmington High School
  • Georgetown Ridge Farm High School
  • Johnsburg High School
  • Lexington High School
  • Litchfield High School
  • Manteno High School
  • Marshall High School
  • Ottawa Township High School
  • Pana High School
  • Plano High School
  • Reed-Custer High School
  • Ridgewood High School
  • Rochester High School
  • Round Lake High School
  • Schaumburg High School
  • St. Joseph-Ogden High School
  • Westville High School


11:00 AM  Buses can begin to drop students off at the corner of 4th and Kirby…no need to be in uniform for this rehearsal.
  • bring instruments, music, and any other equipment. Leave cases on your buses
11:00 AM  Check-In begins in Memorial Stadium through the South Tunnel
11:30 AM  All guard and dance teams report to the South Endzone to begin working on routines
11:30 AM  All winds and drumline report to their respective sections with the Marching Illini for warm-up and review of Band Day tunes
12:00 PM  Set the Band Day Drill Set
1:30 PM  Rehearsal Concludes!  Use this time to get something to eat, explore campus, etc.
4:00 PM  Illini Drumline Public Warm-Up in Grange Grove – West Side of Memorial Stadium – free and open to the public
4:15 PM  Grange Grove Pregame Concert featuring the Marching Illini and the Fighting Illini Football Team – free and open to the public
5:15 PM  Marching Illini reports to the Armory for Uniform Inspection and Music & Visual Warm-Up
5:30 PM  Meet outside of the Armory for the Mass Parade of Bands March to the Stadium-optional
5:45 PM  Parade of Bands [optional] from the Armory to Memorial Stadium
  • If you plan to parade over with the Marching Illini, pay attention to your seat assignments
  • All Bands entering through Portal 5 will turn right on Peabody during the parade…those assigned to Portal 6 will follow the Marching Illini until we you reach Portal 6
  • NO BANDS WILL BE ALLOWED TO ENTER THROUGH THE SOUTH TUNNEL during the parade over to the stadium
6:00 PM  Report to seats in Memorial Stadium – stadium staff will assist you
6:10 PM  Official Performance of the Pregame Show by the world famous Marching Illini
6:30 PM  Kick-Off between Illinois and Eastern Michigan University
8:00 PM  Official Halftime Performance with a cast of thousands – please dress in your official uniform for the performance
  • following the Band Day performance, exit the stadium through the south tunnel and head back to your buses or your seats in the stands
  • you are more than welcome to change clothes at your buses and then enter through your assigned portal according to the seating assignments below
  • you are more than welcome to stay for the rest of the game or you may depart, depending on what is best for you and your students

10:00 PM  Game concludes

  • Feel free to join us and see the Marching Illini at our Post Game Concert at the Education Building following the game


  • Guard & Illinettes Dance Team Demonstration Videos shared via Box
  • Band Day Field Placement
  • Drum Majors of each band will be placed around the perimeter of the field to assist in conducting
  • Halftime Instructions
    • Leave your seats in the stadium with 8:00 left in the second quarter
    • Enter the field level via the South Tunnel of Memorial Stadium
    • Once the clock hits 0:00 move immediately to the sideline where you will enter
    • Whistle sequence will start the process to bring all bands onto the field (64 counts)
    • The opener will be played towards the West Stands
    • Following the opener, horns come down for 4 with MT, turn over your left shoulder for 4 counts to face the East Stands, horns come up the last 4 counts
    • Following the closer, horns come down in 4, MT over your left shoulder 4.
    • Whistles will sound to bring us off the field in 64 counts and then depart through the South Tunnel
  • Concession Stands in the stadium will open following rehearsal for all Band Day participants


Be certain whatever you decide to wear that you match – full uniform is preferred.  The Marching Illini will be dressed in full uniform. There will be time for you to return to your buses to change. Changing facilities will not be provided while on campus however.


  • Lunch and Dinner is on your own.  You may choose to eat at the Memorial Stadium Concession Stands or eat something on your own.  Concessions will be open following our Band Day rehearsal.
  • There are water fountains in the stadium and water bottles are available for purchase. The Marching Illini and Division of Intercollegiate Athletics will not be able to provide bottled water for you. Please plan ahead for the well being of your students.
  • Restrooms are located throughout the stadium 
  • First Aid is available throughout the stadium
  • Feel free to visit the concession stands, restrooms, etc.  Do not play in the stands, but please cheer on the Illini!
  • Please sit in your assigned seats only.  Do not “overflow” into adjacent reserved seating sections.  Seating information and game tickets will be distributed at check-in based on the numbers you provided
  • The Marching Illini will parade to the Education Building and will perform a post game show following the game.  We invite all of you to join us if you are still around after the game concludes.  Please know that you may leave anytime after the conclusion of halftime if you choose.  
  • It is recommended that all bands stay together as much as possible.  Students should not be allowed to “roam” the campus by themselves at anytime during the day.
  • There is no room in the stands for instrument cases and hat boxes so please plan accordingly.  Your buses and equipment trailers will be your storage area.
  • Bands should not play anytime around the stadium until it is performance time
  • Remember, there are others in the stands that came to watch the game.  Be courteous of our patrons and represent your school with a great deal of class and pride
  • Many thanks for bringing your students to what we hope is a truly great day for them


  • Bus Parking Permit – display these in all of your buses or equipment trucks/trailers
  • Traffic Routes, Memorial Stadium Map, Memorial Stadium Seating
  • Memorial Stadium Seating Assignments (Tickets will be distributed at check-in on Saturday)
    • All buses and trailers will unload at the corner of Fourth Street and Kirby starting at 11am. Students and directors will proceed to the South Tunnel entrance into Memorial Stadium…please do not bring uniforms or cases with you to this rehearsal…only what you need for rehearsal

    • Please make sure there are no parent vehicles in the bus caravan parked along Pennsylvania – all parents need to park in permit lots notated on the parking map above
    • Once buses unload they need to take Florida to Lincoln and then to Pennsylvania where they will park between Sixth Street and Dorner Drive (on both sides of the street).  Athletic Parking staff will be there to assist in parking the buses.  If necessary we will use side streets on Pennsylvania to help with parking.  Pennsylvania from Fourth to Sixth will be open so I FUND pass holders can park in the Law Library so be cautious when you return to your buses following rehearsal.

    • Following halftime or the conclusion of the game, all schools, staff, band members,  will load on Pennsylvania


  • Ticket Information for Band Day available now
  • Click HERE to purchase tickets
  • Use promo code BANDDAY
  • For more information, feel free to contact:
  • NOTE:  All tickets for participating band students, directors, and staff are FREE