At the end of last year's season we began the process of pushing the kids to raise the money to attend. They were all given the opportunity to raise money so that parents didn't have to carry the brunt of the cost ($275 per student). We also set up a scholarship fund that the community was encouraged to contribute to. Any money raised over and above their individual costs was put into the scholarship fund to help another student attend.
As I arrived at Country Lake Christian Retreat (yes, our band used a Christian camp...neat huh???) I immediately noticed a new sense of camaraderie among the students. They had become a family...and it showed in their practice. I was so impressed with this group of students...here it was, around 100 degrees, and they were out on the field working diligently to get their second set on the field by the end of practice. And they accomplished that goal!
My hat is off to the director and his staff of instructors, as well as the parent volunteers who have given up their time to stay at camp with the kids. They have done a fantastic job and the kids... well a little sweat and hard work has paid off... they are now unified, and I can hardly wait to see what happens at this year's competitions! If you would like a schedule of their events, visit http://www.easternbanddept.com/ .