Alaska's only HS marching band set for Inaugural without bailout
Alaska's only high school marching band is getting closer to it's fundraising goal, but still has a way to go to pull together the money it needs to march in the Obama inaugural parade.
Source Story By STEPHANIE KOMARNITSKY
[Band Director Jamin Burtion is] still hoping to get the 46 students, 10 chaperones and their equipment to the capitol for the Jan. 20 event, even if takes a lot of elbow grease.
Burton said he's been working the phones and the airlines to bring down the costs of the trip. He figures he's only about $6,000 short, so close he says he can't give up.
To cut costs, Mr. Burton says the band will fly in Newark, N.J., and be bused to the capital. The Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Virginia has agreed to put the band up during its stay and will host a fundraiser as well.
Source Story By Michael Rovito/Frontiersman
Alaska's only high school marching band remains on its own to raise money to cover a trip to Washington, D.C. , to march in the inaugural parade.
Alaska will celebrate 50 years of statehood in 2009.
PALMER -- The Colony High School marching band will have to continue raising funds for a trip to Washington, D.C., without monetary help from the Mat-Su Borough School Board.
The board voted 3-3 Monday on a decision of whether to give the band $15,000 to help cover expenses for a trip to play in the Jan. 20 Inaugural Parade.
The tie vote effectively becomes a failed vote.
Board members opposed to covering the band's $15, 000 shortfall said it would set a bad precedent and open the board to many more requests for special funding.
Marching band director Jamin Burton said he disagrees.
“How many other groups will be invited by the President-elect to play?” Burton asked after the vote failed.
That notion seemed to be one reason the board members in support of the funding found it to be a good idea.
“I think it’s the right thing to do,” Colver said of the funding. “It’s history in the making.”
Still, Welton, who said she received a threatening letter attempting to influence her decision, said setting a precedent where the board acts like a bank is bad.
“We cannot be the cash cow,” Welton said.
However, the band and its supporters say the youngsters will march one way or the other and fundraising will continue.
The Colony High School marching band is the only marching band in the state, and was invited to play in the inaugural parade over scores of other bands that applied to do so.
The band is receiving some help from Alaska Airlines, which waived its second bag luggage fee for the students. A church in Fairfax, Va., has agreed to lodge the band.
Burton said anyone who wants to donate money to help the band get to Washington, D.C., can still do so at any Wells Fargo Bank.There is also a Web site, www.chsmusicboosters.com., that will accept online donations.
So far, a gauge on the Web site shows 12 percent of the $45,000 the band still needs to get to the Inaugural Parade.
If you go to the website, you'll see video of these kids in action.