Hawkeye Marching Band forms giant hand to wave to the Children’s Hospital

Marching band members open up about their special take on the first quarter wave

The University of Iowa's new game day tradition of waving to the kids at the Stead Family Children's Hospital has taken the sports world by storm.

Aside from constant coverage of the first quarter wave by media groups like the Big 10 Network and ESPN, other university marching bands across the country, like Michigan State and Rutgers, have sent their own waves to the Children's Hospital all the way back in Iowa City.

But at yesterday's home game, The Hawkeye Marching Band decided to shake things up for the first quarter wave.

The band took the field and created their own giant hand to wave at the children watching from above, and what a better game to make the debut at than the homecoming game verses University of Illinois.

We spoke to members of the Hawkeye Marching Band about their experience participating in the giant wave.

Mallory Uttech, 19, from Waupun, Wisconsin is a trumpet player in the marching band.

“It made the tradition more special in a way,” Mallory said. “Once we knew what the idea was and who it was for, it made us want to work harder to make it perfect.”

Mallory told us that band members weren't informed what the formation was when instructors originally introduced the idea, but that they all assumed what it was for. It wasn’t until rehearsing on Friday that their suspicions were confirmed: the formation would be a tribute to all those watching from the Children's Hospital.

Deke Hagen, 19, from Walcott, Iowa, marches cymbals for the band. He recalls what it was like being on the field during the wave.

"While we marched I looked up at Jumbotron and got chills when I saw how good the formation looked," Deke said. "Waving at the end of the first quarter is so awesome, but for it to be turning into an event so big that the marching band made a formation specifically for the kids is that much more incredible."

"It is absolutely the best new college game day tradition."

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