Do You Know The Words?

On Sept. 14, 1814, Francis Scott Key wrote The Star Spangled Banner, our country’s national anthem. It has been around for almost 200 years, but believeit or not, people still do not know the words to it.

On the sunny morning of Sept. 14, students, faculty and staff of Castleton State College stood on the steps of Woodruff Hall to sing the National Anthem in an effort to commemorate its words to all ages, and to honor its history and importance.

“I think just having this day every single year helps a lot with the learning of the words,” said Christy Papandrea, president of Castleton’s Collegiate Chapter of the National Association for Music Education.

Castleton State was one of several schools around the country to participate in the event. The goal of this event is to teach students of all ages the words to our country’s anthem, because today, many people are unfamiliar with them.

“So many people don’t know the words at all … I think the single purpose here is to be as one. The National Anthem should be a sense of pride and spirit in our country,” said Vicki Matteson, a professor in the music department.

Zach Shambo is a sophomore, and this was his second year taking part in this commemoration.

“Last year I was kind of just dragged in just for the heck of it ’cause we needed more people … This year was so much better than last year ’cause we had at least 10 times the amount of people. Just having everyone together singing the national anthem just brings more pride to our country,” he said.

Glenn Giles, chair of the music department, also praised this year’s effort and its mission.

“Today we had a wonderful turnout, and hopefully we’ve taken this mission of helping the national anthem to be spread amongst people,” he said.

Organizers and participants of the event hope that it will increase student’s knowledge of the National Anthem, and why it is such an important part of our country.

“Everyone just being together in one area singing our National Anthem brought a warm feeling to my heart,” Shambo said.

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