White Station winter guard takes on Houston Colorfest


Molly Yuan

Poised and ready, the White Station winter guard solemnly anticipates the first beat of the music. This was the team’s first ever competition, which took place at Houston High School in Germantown, TN.

A battalion of flags fly into the air, silks spinning in perfect unison. With a synchronized clink, the team of girls catch the poles and swiftly glide across the floor to pick up new pieces of equipment, barely leaving a moment to breathe. The audience cheers loudly as performers execute flawless tosses, and the judges scribble comments furiously as they scrutinize the countless visuals. Such is the excitement that fills the gym during a winter guard competition, and such is the wonder the White Station winter guard was able to experience for the first time ever. 

On Saturday, March 7, the Spartan winter guard competed in the Houston High School Colorfest, a winter guard competition that showcased teams from all over Shelby County. This was the team’s very first competition, and, naturally, nerves filled the air. 

“It wasn’t nervous like, ‘I’m scared I’m going to do terribly.’ It was more nervous like, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m really about to perform,’ since I’ve never done something like this before,” guard member Kai Hawkins (11) said. 

Despite the tense atmosphere, the guard eventually loosened up, as two months of rigorous practice had prepared them for this exact moment. This year’s show was titled “The Colors We Choose,” an elegant and slow-moving performance with Gregory Porter’s “Painted On Canvas” as musical accompaniment. The show depicted the graceful progression of life using art and colors as its framework—life begins as a blank canvas and, over time, transforms into a paint-splattered masterpiece.

“As you go throughout your life, you’ve got different colors or different things that are adding to who you are… you pick what you do and it adds to your whole image,” Hawkins said. 

The show went smoothly, and despite not earning an award, the guard still considers the competition a success. 

“Getting to work with a bunch of people and really putting in a lot of effort… that was really fun. Even though it was our first competition, it was still so amazing to go and get to do that,” Hawkins said.