High School Band Day is a UW-Madison band event that has remained one of the most popular and colorful attractions held in Camp Randall each year. The first recorded evidence of the event is from 1935, when fifteen Wisconsin high school bands were invited to campus. The day began with a marching competition in the morning and finished with an afternoon football game in Camp Randall Stadium. The winning band of the competition was awarded the privilege of performing at halftime. Each band paraded into the stadium before the game and combined with the Wisconsin Band for a performance of The Star-Spangled Banner.
In 1937, Band Day was discontinued because the stands were filling with fans and not guest musicians. In 1959, Camp Randall Stadium underwent major reconstruction and in 1960, the Athletic Board reinstated Band Day. Limiting the event to 4,000 high school musicians, the bands were placed in the north end zone throughout the game. From here the bands were united into one massive band and performed several musical selection to the delight of Badger fans. In 1980, the bands were moved to the south end zone, in front of the Field House, where it was felt that both the view and sound would be enhanced for spectators.
Participation in High School Band Day remains by invitation only. Each spring, invitations are sent to the alma mater of current Badger Band members.