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Meet Our Panther Band!


The Panther Band is a fixture in our Porterville community, as it has been around since 1902! The band has performed twice at Carnegie Hall in New York City, and has marched in six Tournament of Roses Parades as well as over 50 Hollywood Christmas Parades. Mr. Clark Keele, our band director of 5 years, is a Porterville High School Alumni. It is an honor for Mr. Keele to be the Panther Band director because he studied under our previous band director, Mr. Jimmy Kusserow, who is also a PHS alumni. Prior to Mr. Kusserow, the famous Buck Shaffer led our Panther Band. Our Panther Band is a major part of our legacy in our community as one of the best high schools around. In fact, there are many people around the country who know just how famous the Panther Band is and the legacy our band director carries on.


While Mr. Keele is excited to continue the strong traditions of the Panther Band, he also hopes to bring a few new ideas and show that the Panther Band can make new traditions while continuing old ones too. I had the privilege of sitting down with him for an interview.

What made you want to be the band director at Porterville High School?

“I always loved music. When I moved down to Porterville I saw the Panther Band at the Veterans Day parade, and I wanted to be a part of the tradition and honor of Porterville High School. So, being the director now is an honor.”

How was being a Drum Major at Porterville High School?

 “It was fun, it was a big student responsibility that you get to conduct the whole band and the pressure you’re under to make sure everything is right. It’s a huge student responsibility. And I love working with our drum major this year, Russel Arcos.”

What instrument did you play?

“I played the Tender Saxophone but my senior year I played oboe because their oboe player graduated so my band detector asked if I could play it. The person who was supposed to help me got sick, and I learned how to play by myself.”

What is your educational background?

“I graduated from Porterville High School and I went to Brigham Young University and got a Bachelor’s degree in Arts and Music.”

What is the most rewarding or most challenging part of your role?

“The most rewarding part is seeing the band achieve something they struggle with at the beginning of the year.”

How much does the band work at field shows?
“They start Band camp before school starts everyday in class, Four hours of night practice marching 8 hours a lot of work between August through November so 16-14 hours a week plus there own practicing.”


An integral part of the Panther Band’s success is our incredibly talented and dedicated auxiliary team, led by the amazing Mrs. Tera Entenman. I also had the opportunity to sit down with her to chat.

What made you want to be the Auxiliary teacher?

“Ms. Enos wanted me to take her positions because she was here for 30 years.”

Were you involved in band in High School, and if so, what did you play?

“I was not in Band or Auxiliary I was a Cheerleader at Porterville High School I wish I tried out for Orange Blossoms.”

What is your Educational background?

“I have a Bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Engineering and a Masters in Engineering”

What is the most rewarding or most challenging part of your job?

“The most rewarding part is building a relationship with the girls. They’re all amazing to work with.”

In addition to Auxiliary what else do you teach?

“I teach Engineering.”

What do you think is the Legacy of the Orange Blossoms ?

“Everyone in town knows the Panther Band and I feel honored to carry on the tradition of the Orange Blossoms. I feel like every little girl in this town wanted to be an Orange Blossom growing up.”


Our Panther Band has been hard at work since the summer to prepare for our field shows this football season.

Be sure to cheer them on at this week’s rally and football game.

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