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Band Boosters PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Jim Cakalic   
Sunday, 15 June 2008 16:47
Organization The St. Charles West Band Booster Club, Inc. is a corporation operated exclusively for charitable purposes to provide positive and active moral support and financial assistance to the St. Charles West High School band program. The Band Boosters is composed of the parents and guardians of band students and operates under a set of by-laws which are necessary to ensure orderly conduct of business as well as to file for incorporated tax-exempt status.
We are a 501(c)(3) organization. Your donations are tax-deductible. If you are interested in sponsoring our charitable activities please see the About Us>Sponsors page for details. You can make a donation online using Google Checkout just to your right.There are four officers on the Leadership Committee: President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The first three are elected officers. The Treasurer is appointed by the Leadership Committee. All officers serve for a term of one year. They are band parents who have the interests of the entire band at heart. During the year they will build and monitor budgets, maintain the by-laws, provide structure around fundraising, and communicate with the booster club at large. The Leadership Committe meets regularly (at least once per month) and coordinates closely with the Band Director to accomplish the stated purpose of supporting the band in its musical endeavors.

General meetings of the Band Booster Club members are convened regularly on a schedule specified in the by-laws. See the Calendar for the specific date and time of scheduled meetings. If you are a Band Booster member, your attendance and participation at meetings is strongly encouraged.

How Can I Help?As a charitable organization, the Booster Club thrives on volunteers. It languishes without them. As the boosters go, so goes the band. You may think that you don’t have any special skills to offer or that you don’t know what to do. No need to worry. There’s a place for everybody. You don’t need any special skill other than willing hands and a cheerful heart. Veteran parents will gladly teach you the ropes. They won’t ask you to take on more than you can handle. But they will ask you to learn. They’ll ask that because they’re thinking of the future. One day, every veteran band parent will "graduate" with their student. The band (including your child) will be depending on you to step up and continue the tradition. Each freshman class brings an infusion of parents who will one day be Booster Club leaders. It’s an experience you’ll never forget -- or regret.
Did you realize that, by the end of the marching season, your child will have devoted several hundred hours to learning and performing this year's show? They may have even spent more time on band than watching TV for the same period! How much time could you donate to supporting an activity that is so important to your child?Fundraising As a primary purpose of the Band Boosters is to provide financial support for the band, it should be no surprise that fundraising is a major focus of booster activity. What may be surprising is how much it actually costs to operate the band. The school district provides basic support for the band by funding a small number of instruments, faculty, and transportation (i.e., yellow buses). That’s nowhere near enough. The costs of being competitive in our division will continue to rise. The only way we can be sure these costs aren’t passed on directly to band families is to "work off" the debt by increased fundraising.

Fundraising helps to offset the costs of operating the semi-trailer rig needed to haul the band equipment to/from competitions, equipment, meals and drinks, transportation, overnight hotel expenses, show entry fees, show design/composition, props, color guard uniforms and flags, the annual awards banquet, and more. Success in fundraising makes it possible for students to participate with lower out of pocket costs for their families. If the boosters did not do any fundraising the additional cost to parents could be $1,000 or more per year per student. As it is, the fixed per student fees at St. Charles West are much lower than other bands of the same caliber. That's because of the energetic and enthusiastic support from the boosters. Please help us to keep band a realistic opportunity for every student who wants to participate.
Riverfest This is a traditional Independence Day celebration that includes fireworks at dusk, shot from barges on the Missouri River. It is sponsored by the City of St. Charles at Frontier Park. Activities include craft and food booths, parade, entertainment, and a children’s area. For the last several years the festival organizers have generously arranged for us to run the ice concession used by all the vendors. Ice must be delivered on-demand, a task that requires 16-20 volunteers each day working in several shifts.
Festival of the Little HillsThis is an historic St. Charles tradition that takes place every year the third weekend of August. Started in the late 1960's, this festival is known nationally as one of the top ten craft fairs, and runs through an entire weekend featuring great food, live entertainment, craft sales, and shows for kids. The theme of the festival centers around the famous Lewis & Clark expedition: many participants don clothing from the era and act out historic events. The city also encourages individuals to bring their homemade crafts, jewelry, paintings, clothing and other items to sell at the festival. It is the largest festival of the year for St. Charles, drawing more than 300,000 visitors. (See http://www.festivalofthelittlehills.com). The Band Boosters operate a food booth that serves chicken and steak sandwiches, bratwursts, and drinks. We can use plenty of volunteers to help prepare and serve the food. We also oversee the parking lot at the Family Arena where shuttle buses take crafters and patrons back and forth to the festival. Each shift requires 2-4 people. The job is simple: point to parking areas and answer questions.
Verizon Wireless AmphitheatreThe Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre (also known as "Riverport Amphitheatre" and formerly "UMB Pavilion") is an outdoor concert venue that staffs its concession stands with volunteers. The band commits to work 9 windows in the North Concession Stand and another 4 positions in an outdoor plaza stand. Parents (or relatives, neighbors, friends, anyone over 21) staff these positions during concerts and other events. In return, ARAMARK gives the band a percentage of the gross at their assigned positions. There are typically 15-20 concerts or other events during the concert season (May through October) so there are plenty of opportunities to participate. Because alcohol is served it is necessary to take a TIPS (Training for Intervention Procedures) class before you can work. Everyone is encouraged to take the training as soon as possible as it is offered infrequently and only at the beginning of a concert season. To encourage everyone to work, the Boosters offer a reduction in the annual band fees if a family commits to working at least 5 shifts.
Craft FairThe craft fair is the second largest fundraising event held by the band, accounting for about 10% of the annual budget. It occurs on the second Saturday of December. The event has been held annually for over 20 years and enjoys substantial community support. Booth spaces located in the commons, auxiliary gym, and main gym mezzanine of the school are sold to crafters from around the region. Nearly 200 crafters participated in the most recent event. Students are needed in the morning and in the evening to help crafters bring items to/from their vehicles. The Boosters operate a concession stand staffed by parents and students. Students also serve as "runners", assisting crafters with concessions and breaks. The fair includes a bake sale consisting of cookies donated by band families, basket raffles, and door prizes. This fundraiser requires advance planning, coordination and advertising. The night before, booth spaces are laid out and numbered. The more volunteers to help, the faster it goes. Signs directing buyers to the various booth venues need to be made and hung. The day of the fair parents are needed to staff tables (cookies, raffle, door prize), provide directions to incoming shoppers, and supervise student volunteers. After the fair, volunteers are needed to remove booth layout tape, clean and remove tarps in the auxiliary gym, return borrowed chairs, and perform any final cleanup.
Trivia NightA Trivia Night is a function where teams of people get together to compete against one another answering prepared trivia questions. Trivia Nights are becoming increasingly popular because they are fun, interactive, and team-based. They make great fundraisers because they are relatively simple to organize and cheap to host. A Trivia Night lasts about three hours. during which 8-10 rounds of questions are asked. A small team is assigned to research and create questions across pre-determined categories like math, science, geography, history, sports, movies, current events, pop culture, etc. The bonus round is themed, significantly harder than the general rounds, and announced in advance of the event to encourage everyone to participate. At the end of the night, the team with the highest score wins. Event tickets are sold for tables of eight. Traditionally, the entry fee includes drinks (soda and beer) and possibly snacks. Preparations don’t need to be too elaborate as many people who attend trivia night events bring their own snacks. Other fundraising opportunities at Trivia Night include 50-50 ticket sales, basket raffles, and business sponsorships for rounds and tables.
Concession StandsSchool volunteer organizations operate the concession stands at school athletic events, particularly football and basketball games. Dates are assigned by lottery to interested organizations so we don’t know until then what the dates are that we will be able to operate the concession stand. The committee chairman will make the dates available as soon as they are known. Several volunteers are needed for each date. The work is easy and shifts are only a couple hours long.
Golf TournamentFor more than 10 years we have hosted a scramble style golf tournament in May. This can be a large fundraiser if we fill the course with foursomes. Additional money is gained by acquiring hole sponsors, side contests, mulligans, tips, etc.
BarbequesEach year we plan several barbeques at local store parking lots. There are both presales to local businesses like car dealerships and serving drive-up/walk-up customers.
Your IdeasFresh ideas on fundraising are always welcome. Please feel free to make any suggestions to the Leadership Committee. Remember, though, that not every idea will be successful. Even good ideas may "fail" if they do not generate the interest necessary from the band and boosters to make them work. But if we keep trying new things we'll eventually find the right mix of activities that will ensure the band is adequately supported each year.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 19 August 2008 13:25 )
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