WASHBURN, N.D. (KXNET) — By this time of year, if you ask most high schoolers if they want to stick around after class, you’d probably get some dirty looks. But that’s not the case in Washburn.

There’s a group of students there who are passionate about music. And they say summer can take its time getting here because they were just chosen as the governor’s band.

Bright and early every school day, around 30 of Dustin Moe’s students are ready to go.

“Our school starts at 8:30, but these kids are here at 8:10 every morning working on their music, Washburn High School Band Director, Dustin Moe said. “So, they come in before everybody else.”

“For me, I don’t really want band to be over. So, it’s like we have just a little bit more than other people, so we get to spend a few extra minutes or hours together,” Washburn Senior, Zoe Oberg said.

With two weeks left of the school year, most kids can’t wait to clean out their lockers, but these high schoolers in Washburn are in no hurry.

“I’m definitely going to miss this band a lot,” Washburn Senior, Grace Boysun said. “And the school, so it’s nice to be able to stick around and hang out.”

The students have put in extra time and have made several bus trips.

“When we added it up, I think we traveled about two thousand miles for different honor bands this year,” Moe said.

The effort hasn’t gone unnoticed. Moe’s band recently got some high praise, being named the Governor’s Band once again.

“It’s not really surprising because these kids have always been really hard-working,” Moe said.

“I was over the moon. We’ve been trying out for the Governor’s Band. We’ve been submitting stuff since my freshman year,” Washburn senior Noah Olson said. “I never thought we’d get it. But I did know if we were to get it, this would be the year to do it.”

Moe’s job is to keep the 31 students on time and on track.

“He’s been super encouraging. He does make a couple of bad jokes every now and then,” Olson said.

“I’m usually surprised by how good we sound. Which may sound bad. But I’m very proud of our band and what we’ve accomplished over the years,” Boysun said. “It’s been a great time.”

For Moe, the music doesn’t stop with graduation. The students still have a holiday performance and a parade to look forward to.

“To me, it’s kind of fun. So, these guys, I get to bug them all the way until the 10th of June. So, it’s like I get to sneakily get to hang out with them a couple more times until summer comes officially,” Moe said.

But for Moe and this group, 2023 has already been one long high note

On the vocal side of things, this year Governor Burgum selected Williston’s High School Chorale as the Governor’s Choir.

Both groups may be invited to perform at state events over the next year.

You can next see the Washburn Band perform in the town’s Memorial Day ceremony on May 29.