Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Fayette County High School Band

Dear Friends of the Fayette County HS Band:
As you may already know, the Fayette County High School marching band was invited to march in the 2007 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, CA on New Year’s Day.  The parade, which features only 15 bands from the entire country, is televised to millions of people worldwide.  Along with the honor of being selected comes a financial commitment.  The per-student cost is $1495.  While most of our students were able to pay for their trip through fundraisers and/or payments, we have found that several students opted to not participate due to financial reasons. 
The president of the Tournament of Roses Parade, Paul Holman, is concerned about the number of our marching band members who are unable to participate because of the cost.  Mr. Holman noticed that we have 125 students out of about 150 signed up to march in the parade.  He stated that this was unacceptable to the Rose Bowl Executive Committee for the following reasons.
  1. The Tournament of Roses (TOR) Parade is such an honor that they want every student to experience it, and for the band parents to pull together to find a way for everyone to go. His analogy was to a football team going to the playoffs.  If players couldn’t afford it, the team would not leave them behind.  We applied for between 145 and 165 and they want us to adhere to that number.
  2. A band of 125 will be too small and not able to play with enough volume for the full length of the parade. 
  3. The TOR usually has the opposite problem.  When bands apply to come they ask for additional spots in the parade because they have so many alumni that return to march in the parade.
                There are several contributing factors to this problem, none of which can be helped.  Among these are a smaller FCHS due to rezoning, the recent Delta bankruptcy scare, and the changing socio-economics of our school.
                While including everyone may be a lofty, unattainable goal, it is the hope of the FCHS Band Boosters that the community will rally behind us and help us to offer this once in a lifetime experience for all of our students.  To accomplish this goal, approximately $30,000 to $40,000 is needed.  We would certainly benefit from any help that individuals or businesses are able to give.  No donation is too small.  Unfortunately, we are quickly approaching a deadline.  The decision must be made by September 21 to either include more students or to cancel the trip that our students have been looking forward to. 
There is no way we can allow our TOR Parade invitation to be rescinded without disappointing the students, families, and community.  We don’t want the FCHS Band to have that reputation.  This is an opportunity for the FCHS Band and community to pull together and work toward the accomplishment of an amazing event.
Kenneth F. Beard
Director of Bands
Fayette County High School
Comments or questions can be directed to Kim Kee at:
(678) 878-0122
Donations may be mailed to:
FCHS Band Boosters
P.O. Box  444
Fayetteville, GA 30214

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