Move in day finally arrived for the fine arts students. They began moving band and choral equipment into their new facilities on Wednesday—before the official dedication ceremony at 5 p.m. Sunday—and the larger, acoustically enhanced rooms drew rave reviews.

Amelia Bottcher helped move band and choral equipment into the new  Fine Arts facilities Wednesday, Aug. 12.

Amelia Bottcher ’17 helped move band equipment into the new Fine Arts facilities.

Junior band students Amelia Bottcher, Adam Domagala, Hugh Tully and Jeremy Yoder all helped carry in some of the percussion equipment. As they entered the new band room, they each did the same thing: they clapped.

Not an applause, mind you, but one clap. Then, another.

“It doesn’t echo,” Jeremy said, as he looked around the room at all of the acoustic panels, sound dampeners and even curtains, all meant to absorb the sound.

The new band and choral rooms, as well as the second floor visual arts studio, all doubled in size, with acoustically designed band and choral areas, as well as a new visual arts center, with the latest in 3D technology.

Adam Domagala and Jeremy Yoder helped carry percussion equipment into the new band room.

Adam Domagala ’17 and Jeremy Yoder ’17 helped carry percussion equipment into the new band room.

Together with the new Fr. Louis Querbes Hall, a multi-media enabled, college-styled dining facility, it’s part of a $3 million, 2,794 square foot addition that took nearly one year to complete.

After Sunday’s dedication ceremony, the new facilities will be ready for freshmen, who start classes Wednesday, before the first full day of classes start Thursday.

Hugh Tully couldn’t help but compare the new digs to the old band room, which was built in 1961, when the school opened.

“The old band room had concrete walls, so the sound just bounced right back at us,” Hugh said. “It affected the way we heard the music, and was really hard on our hearing. With all these new pads on the walls and the ceiling, it reflects the sound really well.”

All of the students agreed the newness of the room, its expansive size, private lockers, hardwood floors and tall ceiling, makes them excited to start the year.

“With all of this new technology,” Amelia added, “I think we’ll learn better.”