The Pitman High School marching band and color guard, known as the “Marching Pride,” was recently invited to Washington D.C. to participate in the 2012 National Independence Day Parade.
The Marching Pride’s invitation was based on recommendations from Governor Jerry Brown. Pitman will be one of 10 schools from California attending the parade.
While the invitation was an honor for the Marching Pride, the price tag for the trip will prove to be a challenge, but a challenge has never been anything Band Director Ruben Modesto has shied away from.
“This is great and very humbling and it’s special to think that a band from Turlock will be in Washington D.C., and then you think of how much it is going to cost, but then you think; ‘we have to go for it.’ This could be a once in a lifetime opportunity for the kids,” said Modesto.
The price tag for the trip will likely exceed $150,000 for 142 students. The first step for Modesto is to get a head count of how many students are committed to attending the trip. Once that number is determined, he said a massive fundraising effort will begin with a local kickoff event in late October.
According to Modesto, band parents, boosters and Pitman administration raise about $30,000 each year just to send the Pride to Northern California band events and there are no plans to cancel anything this school year.
“We are not cancelling anything because of this trip. The fundraising for the D.C. trip will be entirely separate,” he said.
In the coming weeks announcements will be released concerning fundraising events.
To donate visit www.pitmanhighbands.com and click on the “Donations” link on the left-hand side of the page.
To contact Jonathan McCorkell, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 634-9141.