Bringing home a Superior rating and selected as the Overall Grand Champions in their first marching band contests this season, Matoaca High School Marching Band has proven to be one of the best on the field. They have also earned the ranking of a Virginia Commonwealth Honors Band for the last two years, one of only a few throughout the state.
It has been a long road for this 80-member band and its director of 11 years, Donald Davis, and he feels it is time to showcase the band and how it represents the community with the purchase new uniforms.
“We are a quality band,” said Davis. “Now I want our look to represent us as a quality band and have a ‘wow’ look with new uniforms. Something that really grabs you.”
Davis’ program has been given the opportunity to work towards the goal of purchasing new uniforms with a $10,000 allotment from the school board.
“This is something that comes around once every five years,” Davis said. “If we don’t use it, we lose it.”
Uniforms are custom designed for the school and run around $400 for each. Davis is expecting a growth of another twenty students next year and will be ordering 100 sets of uniforms with a total cost of around $40,000. Fund raising needs to be complete by April to be able to order the uniforms and receive them by the 2013-2014 school year.
When students arrived in the new school building 11 years ago, the band program had nine students. When Davis arrived, he was the third band director for that year.
“The program had been cut, but parents fought to get it back,” said Davis.
Davis was hired and taught music at three different schools that first year. Today, he has 150 students, compared to the first year when the program grew to 24. The first purchase of their uniforms were the most basic they could get and after 11 years the majority are worn and tattered.
Fund raising has included a Tag Day in the community and a donut sale. They are preparing to sell Matoaca pull-string backpacks, cookies and candles and have scheduled a CiCi Pizza night, where they will receive 10% of the sales from families mentioning Matoaca when they arrive to eat. The CiCi’s event will be held Monday, Oct. 22, at the Bermuda Crossroads location.
“We are trying every avenue we can think of,” he said.
The Band Boosters are also looking for Band Patrons. Families or business who would like to donate money and become a patron.
Davis said the band program has made a name for itself across the state. It is a program that he motivates the students to take ownership of and one they can be proud of.
“We have a quality sound and we want something that looks like we sound. Something that the community can be proud of,” said Davis.
For more information email Davis at Donald_Davis@ccpsnet.net or call 590-3108 Ext. 256. Donations can be mailed to the school at 17700 Longhouse Ln. Chesterfield, VA 23838.