Blanchard HS Band

February 2016 Newsletter

Congrats OMEA All-State Band & Orchestra members!

Just two weeks ago we had three students travel to Tulsa to represent Blanchard in the OMEA All-State band and orchestra. Tara Thomason, Connor Neumann, and Amie Reardon had the amazing experience of performing with the top students from all of Oklahoma. The concerts were incredible and it was an outstanding weekend. Bravo to all of our Blanchard Band students! As we always say, band kids are the best kids!

Leadership Council Lock-In Kudos

Bravo to our Leadership Council, spearheaded by President Connor Hopper, for putting on an outstanding lock-in last Friday! It was well attended and everyone who went said they had a great time. Also, a special shout out to Ms. Shepherd for being the boss while I was away at an honor band. She put in a VERY long day and every time I checked in with her she was having a blast! We're lucky to have such an awesome assistant band director!

Check Charms to make sure your student's account is in good financial standing. If your student checked out breakfast tickets or coupon books and haven't sold them or turned them in, there is a negative charge to the account.

Calendar of Upcoming Events (always available on Charms!)

  • February 1st-4th, Pass off music for OSSBDA All-State HB
  • February 5th, Parent-Teacher conferences (directors unavailable)
  • February 5th-6th, All-Region Honor Band; Weatherford
  • February 8th, 4th trip payment due
  • February 11th-13th, OSSBDA All-State Honor Band
  • February 15th, No School
  • February 19th, Pre-district Contest @Edmond Santa Fe HS
  • February 21st, Mattress Sale
  • February 24th, Solo & Ensemble pass offs due
  • February 27th, District Solo & Ensemble Contest
  • February 29th, OU Concert; we will go watch this performance; optional
  • March 3rd, HS District Contest @Edmond Santa Fe HS
  • March 7th, 5th trip payment due
  • March 12th, St. Patrick's Day parade; Blanchard
  • March 14th-18th, Spring Break

Honor band pass offs & hotel fees

If your student is a member of All-Region, OSSBDA All-State, or OMEA All-State, itineraries with information will be sent home as soon as possible. These will be filled with info, so please read them carefully! There is a $25 hotel/dinner fee for All-Region members that is due by the first day of the honor band, February 5th, or anytime beforehand.

Solo & Ensemble Reminders

Solo & ensemble rehearsals are well under way! Students playing a solo and using one of our accompanists should have already signed up for rehearsal times (check with your student). Soloists using an accompanist need to bring $20 to offset the cost of the accompanist. This is due by the day of solo & ensemble, Saturday, February 27th.

If your student is in a large ensemble, we are rehearsing one day a week in class but they should be working on their music independently as well. Students in smaller ensembles should be working on their own outside of class time.

All students participating in solo and ensemble need to play for a lesson teacher or a director in order to pass off and participate at contest. This should be scheduled for before or after school by February 24th.

And remember, parents, friends, and family are encouraged to come to solo & ensemble on the 27th at Norman HS and watch your student compete! Students usually perform in a more intimate setting, like a classroom or band room, and you can watch the entire performance and judging process. It's much different than our large competitions and it's nearby so make plans to come check it out! We'll have a scheduled itinerary to you as soon as we get it.

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TRIP NOTICE! Airfare was $20 higher than we estimated so every person traveling with the band to NYC will pay $20 more for their final payment. If you already paid off your trip, send $20 more by the final trip payment. Students can still fundraise this amount if they choose. Thank you!

Trip Payment Due February 8th

Please remember there is a trip payment is due on February 8th. If you need any special arrangements, please let Ms. Kauffman know now and we'll get things situated so it works best for you! This trip is shaping up to be EPIC! A full payment is $250 for students and $300 for chaperones. Remember to check Charms to see what your student fundraised so you know how much you owe.

Spring Softball & Baseball Concessions

Softball and baseball concessions will be on Charms soon (an email and a Celly will be sent) and we need volunteers! Parents, we need your help in a big way. There are lots of dates and times available and we must have an adult at each game. Remember, students and parents who work earn $7 an hour and the money you earn goes towards your student's trip account.

To start, every student and parent can sign up to work a maximum of 4 games. Once everyone has had a chance to sign up, if there are more openings, we will allow more opportunities to work. Thank you for keeping this fair for all to participate!

Instrument Step-Up Night

Come check out the next level of instruments for your student on Tuesday, March 8th from 6:30-8:00pm! Ada Music will be bringing in all kinds of intermediate instruments for our students to try out. If you'd like to see a specific instrument, let Ada Music know and they'll do their best to get it here. The instruments will be in the band room all week for students to test (with their own mouthpiece!). If you rent from Ada you have options for applying some of the money you've paid towards your current instrument to a new one. And if you're not in the market to go all the way for a new horn, come check out the nicer mouthpieces they'll also have available. A new mouthpiece is a great way to improve your sound if you're not ready to commit to a new instrument. If you have any questions about instruments, mouthpieces, or financing, give Ada Music a call - 580-436-0838.

Mattress Fundraiser Reminder!

Remember to spread the word about our upcoming mattress sale that is happening this month on Sunday, February 21st, 10am-5pm in the HS Commons. We will be sending home flyers with students on the 10th and we have yard signs available in the band room that students can pick up for you. Thanks to the parents and friends who came to the meeting and earned the band $165!

Here is a flyer to distribute to everyone you know! Also, you can text "Blanchard" to 405-531-9744 to get a direct link to the event (the most texts you will receive in response is 2, so you won't be bombarded!).

Calling All Band Banquet Photos!

It's time to start thinking about our banquet! Please make sure to email Ms. Shepherd any and all photos for the banquet video so she can start working on it now. We'd love photos from this year, but especially some old photos of our seniors when they were young kiddos in band. If you'd like, feel free to bring in a flash drive. Thanks!

Background checks for volunteers

Please remember that if you didn't fill out your form with Brenda at uniform checkout and get her a copy of your driver's license, you'll need to get that done prior to volunteering. The cost of the background check is $12.50 and is required if you want to work directly with our students. For more information, contact Brenda at

HS Band Students of the Month!

Our Blanchard HS Band Students of the month for February are Courtney Clark & Connor Hopper!

  • Courtney is a trumpet section leader and a member of the band Leadership Council. It has been a great senior year for Courtney and in fact, it has been an amazing band career for her! She has auditioned and made numerous honor bands, she always participates in solo and ensemble, and the amount of practice she does at home has always set her apart when she gets to class. The coolest thing to see this year is her dedication to our younger band students. Courtney gave up one of her free hours her senior year and chose to volunteer with the 7th & 8th grade band, playing with them, working with the trumpet players one on one, and inspiring them to try their best at honor bands and solo and ensemble. I don't know if she has any idea how much these kids look up to her, but they absolutely adore her and I understand why! She's a special girl and we're so proud to have watched her grow up and become a leader over the last 8 years. Thank you for everything, Courtney!
  • Connor is the saxophone section leader and the president of the Leadership Council. He has done a great job organizing Leadership Council and getting things done without having to be asked. It has been a great help to us band directors! Over the years Connor has consistently participated in honor bands and solo and ensemble, even saving his own money to purchase a soprano saxophone and playing it in solos and ensembles. He has also been taking lessons for some time and in December made it to the final round of All-State, making him one of the top 24 alto saxophone players in the state! This is an outstanding achievement! We appreciate his leadership he has shown as a player and as the band president. Thank you for all you have given this band, Connor!

How to get credit for your monthly newsletter grade! Due by Friday, February 26th!

The purpose of the monthly newsletter is to make sure that students and parents are all on the same page and know about all band activities. To get credit, a parent needs to send an email to the Blanchard Band directors that has the following info: student name, grade, parent name, and that the newsletter has been read. This earns you 100%! If you don't have the ability to email, please have your student get a hard copy from a director and it can be signed and returned for the same grade.

Remember, newsletters are only accepted during the month of the newsletter. Once the month has passed, that newsletter can no longer be submitted.

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