There's nothing like a love of music to encourage a sense of family among strangers.
A group of music lovers at Kennewick's Kamiakin High wanted to shine outside their school's music program, so they formed VIBE, which stands for Voices In Beautiful Expression.
But this is more than a Glee-esque choir, said VIBE's musical director Megan Openshaw.
"These kids sing, dance and have a lot of fun performing together," she said. "They've become a family."
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There are 17 students, ages 14 to 22, who make up VIBE, but Openshaw welcomes anyone who would like to join, no matter what school they attend.
Most of VIBE's members didn't know each other very well when they first got together three years ago.
"Being part of VIBE is like having a second family for me," said Ernhel Tatunay, 17, a senior. "I can be myself here and never feel like I'm being judged. It's a good feeling."
Andrew Sandoval, 17, also a senior, said spending time performing with VIBE keeps him on the straight and narrow.
"I love music as much as I love sports," he said. "And it truly does keep me out of trouble. I can escape from life's problems here. These people are like family."
Openshaw's daughter, Danielle, said she learns much more than music.
"We all work together well and welcome new ideas," the 17-year-old said. "I'm always learning new things, and being involved with VIBE also gives me a chance to practice good leadership skills."
Kylee Larson, 15, also said she gains more than music knowledge and performance experience as a member.
"This is the most important thing I do," she said. "And its not just getting the chance to sing; it's the family atmosphere that's nice. I feel very lucky to be a part of it."
As with the cast of Glee, VIBE has more girls than guys, but no one in the club has dealt with a "slushy facial." On Glee, club members constantly are bombarded in the face with slushy drinks by football players.
"There are a few guys who think singing is still stupid, that it's a girlie thing to do," Sandoval said. "But nothing like what goes on in the TV show."
Director Openshaw hopes to expand the group and perform across the Northwest.
There is no cost to join VIBE, she said. "The kids do buy their own T-shirts for $22," she said. "But there are no fees to be a part of this group. We welcome anyone who loves to perform."