How Campus Ink Helped the Marching Illini perform safely during COVID-19

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How Campus Ink Helped the Marching Illini perform safely during COVID-19

Posted by Laken Browning, November 13th 2020

Summary: Marching band performances have been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. But, even though the Marching Illini won’t be performing, Campus Ink worked with band director Barry Houser to develop a musician-friendly face mask to allow members to play in a safe manner.


Marching Illini member utilizing one of Campus Ink's custom made musician masks


The Marching Illini needed a PPE solution for performing and playing their instruments safely


When the pandemic hit, there were many questions about what the Marching Illini were going to be able to do to move things forward, and to continue to play in a safe manner.


Typical protective face masks, of course, do not have a slit in them. But, musicians need an opening in masks to allow them to effectively play their instruments.

Band members playing at University of Illinois' Memorial Stadium

Campus Ink + Clubhouse Athletic worked with the Marching Illini to develop a custom mask


Through working alongside our partner company, Clubhouse Athletic, and with Band Director, Barry Houser, we were able to develop this PPE solution that allowed band members to play their instruments safely and properly. We created a custom mask for the Marching Illini which allows musicians to insert their instrument through an overlapping opening in the mouth.
This new mask style lets them play safely, with mitigations in place to reduce the risk of spreading aerosols and - in turn - the coronavirus.


A cloudy day at Memorial Stadium while the Marching Illini hold practice


Here at Campus Ink and Clubhouse Athletic, we have always been about pushing our boundaries and finding solutions for our clients. We never thought we would have to develop a customized neck gaiter with a mouthpiece hole for marching bands to play in empty stadiums - but here we are. It’s certainly unexpected, but we love the challenge and the ability to find solutions for our customers.


Various Marching Illini playing with our custom made flute masks


Thanks for reading! Leave us a comment below if you have any questions, and be sure to follow us on social! We're on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn and Youtube.

About Laken Browning

Howdy! My name is Laken, and I'm the Director of Marketing at Campus Ink. I'm a University of Illinois alum and Chicagoland native, currently residing in Lincoln Park. I head marketing at Campus Ink - running our social channels, blog and email marketing. In addition to my "day job", I'm a yoga teacher and food blogger (@lakenmakes) - with a passion for health and wellness. I love music, cooking and caring for my house plants.  

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