The University of New Mexico’s football season is coming to an end, and with that comes the often overlooked end to the marching band season.

Band members from across New Mexico and surrounding states are still putting their hearts into their performances, including those who marched this weekend at the Zia Marching Band Fiesta.

The Fiesta was the final marching competition of the season and one of the final University of New Mexico Spirit Marching Band performances of the 2017-2018 school year. 

Marching bands from New Mexico and Colorado competed on Saturday at UNM’s Dreamstyle Stadium, where 21 high schools were also represented, including Albuquerque’s Manzano High School, Eldorado High School and Volcano Vista High School.

The idea behind the Zia Marching Band Fiesta is simple: bring students together to celebrate the end of the season and show off their musical talents in a positive and light-hearted competition space.

The Fiesta provides the high school students with the opportunity to perform and also introduces them to UNM while increasing their exposure to university-level marching bands. 

During the preliminary rounds, each of the 21 bands performed and were judged based on their individual and ensemble music performance, individual and ensemble visual performance and their general music and visual performances. 

The 10 bands with the highest scores advanced to the final round, where they performed once more.

The Clovis High School Wildcat Marching Band was named Grand Champion of the Zia Marching Band Fiesta, followed by Oñate High School as first runner-up and La Cueva High School as second runner-up. It was Clovis’ fifth consecutive year winning the top spot.

The UNM Spirit Marching Band was in full uniform when it performed after the preliminary performances.

The Lobos’ performance consisted of a 10-minute composition that featured “Open Up Wide” by Billy Chase, “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” by the Andrews Sisters and “One More Time” by Chuck Corea.

The Spirit Marching Band’s performance also featured multiple trumpet solos, the performance of the Lobo fight song, call and response with the audience and the formation of the words “UNM” and “LOBOS” by the band members on the field. 

The event, which UNM hosts annually, featured an abundance of music, concessions which included nachos and shaved ice and event souvenirs like T-shirts.

The Fiesta lasted about 12 hours and featured 31 band performances, most of which lasted for about 10 minutes.

Bands who wished to compete were charged an entry fee of $375.

Students who are interested in attending the Zia Marching Band Fiesta and other marching band events can view a detailed schedule on the UNM Bands webpage,, or on the UNM Band’s Facebook page.

Timber Mabes is a Culture Reporter with the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @timbermabes.