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'Follow the Pride' band blog

Mountaineer fans who are going to Glendale, as well as those who are staying home, can follow the West Virginia University Marching Band online as ???The Pride of West Virginia??? travels to??Arizona for the??Tostitos Fiesta??Bowl Jan. 2. The band will provide a blog??linked??from??WVU BowlSpace (http://bowlgame.wvu.edu/ )??to record all of the highlights. You can go directly to the blog at followthepride .??

The band???s Web designer, Chris Southard, will be reporting on what the band does throughout the trip.

???No WVU bowl appearance would be complete without the WVU Marching Band,?????he said. ???So for those who aren't traveling to Arizona, we want to bring ???The Pride??? to you. This is our way to connect the families and fans with the University experience.???

Southard also did a blog for the band during last year???s bowl game in Jacksonville, Fla.,??and received a lot of positive feedback from parents and fans. Like last year, he will be working with Sprint, which is providing broadband access and a PDA camera phone so the blog can be updated at each of the events and stops the band makes.

Beginning Sunday, Dec. 30, Southard will provide periodic updates in several forms -- text messages, photos and video highlights.

???We will bring you reports from all the band's rehearsals as well as the performances,??? he said. ???The performances will include those at the Insight Fiesta Bowl Block Party, College Football???s Biggest Party and, of course, during the pregame and halftime activities at the game.?????

More??than??350 members of the band will fly from Pittsburgh to Phoenix Monday, Dec. 31. The group will perform at the Insight Fiesta Bowl Block Party that evening.

The following day, there will be a mini-band performance at the "Mountaineer Connection" event, hosted by WVU and the WVU Alumni Association, at Garduno???s of Scottsdale, the Valley of the Sun???s premier Mexican restaurant as voted by the New Times People???s Choice Awards and Ranking Arizona.

On Wednesday, Jan. 2, "The Pride" will perform at the APS Pregame Party,??a Stadium Club event, College Football's Biggest Party and the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl (nationally televised on FOX).

The band will return to Morgantown Thursday, Jan. 3.

In addition to Southard???s band blog, look for reports from Kathryn Gregory, a senior news-editorial major from Somers, N.Y., and??Steve Douglas, president and chief executive officer of the WVU Alumni Association, at WVU BowlSpace.