Houston Raceway Park news 2010-04-04

University of Houston Marching Band to perform national anthem at Houston race HOUSTON (April 4) -- The award-winning University of Houston's "Spirit of Houston" Marching Band will perform the national anthem April 11 during prerace festivities...

University of Houston Marching Band to perform national anthem at Houston race

HOUSTON (April 4) -- The award-winning University of Houston's "Spirit of Houston" Marching Band will perform the national anthem April 11 during prerace festivities for the 23rd annual O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals at Houston Raceway Park.

"Having the University of Houston Marching Band kick-off race day definitely will take the excitement level up several notches," said Seth Angel, HRP's general manager. "This squad is very high energy and they are beloved by the people who live in this area. We're all very proud of the Cougar band and they way they represent our city. It's an honor to have them join us for the race."

The Spirit of Houston Marching Band has performed in front of millions of people as part of the Super Bowl's halftime show and has marched in numerous parades across the United States. It notably performed at the historic tennis match between Billy Jean King and Bobby Riggs at the Houston Astrodome and a recording of its rendition of the Star Spangled Banner was used for years in New York's Madison Square Garden.

The 250-member squad, comprised of both music majors and regular students, is best known for its support of the University of Houston football and basketball teams. Before each home game, the band leads a parade of Cougar fans to Robertson Stadium where they help welcome the team onto the field. They also travel to all away games to entertain fans at halftime and help spur the Cougar players to victory by engaging supporters in numerous traditional fight songs.

Marching band legend Dr. Bill Moffitt has led the squad for years and is credited with creating the call-to-arms fight song "Eat Em' Up," now used by numerous colleges and high schools. Additionally, freshman members of the band transport a large brass bell to each home game to count the home team's score after each point is posted.

"When the band marches into the racetrack everyone will know it's time to get after it, just like at a football game," Angel said. "We hope everyone enjoys this performance."

Houston Raceway Park has aggressively sought to improve its facility in the last three years. In working with the Texas Department of Transportation, the track was able to secure direct access to Interstate 10 via the new Grand Parkway, drastically reducing fans ingress and egress to the parking lots. The pits were also resurfaced and extended, Musco lighting for the track was installed behind the grandstands to give fans an unobstructed view of the action, and the racing surface itself was ground and smoothed for optimum performance. There also is a brand new indoor/outdoor Top Eliminator Club that brings guests closer to the action than ever before.

Houston Raceway Park is located off Interstate 10 in Baytown. Race fans should take State Highway 99 (exit 799) and proceed south. Exit at FM 565, and turn right. Houston Raceway Park is located a quarter-mile mile down on your right.

The track offers an array of ticketing options from single-day tickets starting as low as $35 to weekend packages in the Top Eliminator Club. There are also RV campsites available that include ticket packages. All seats are reserved so ordering online will save time on race day.

-source: houston raceway park

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Series NHRA