ClawsonJuly 16, 2012
Reunion to raise funds to replace old band uniforms
By Chris Jackett
C & G Staff Writer
CLAWSON — Although her last name may be different now and she graduated 20 years ago, one local resident still has a lot of pride in her high school’s marching band and would like them to look the part.
Clawson High School Class of 1992 Reunion Committee Chairwoman Jennifer (Ellinger) True is spearheading an effort to raise $23,500 to purchase 90 new uniforms for the band, which wears the same wool outfits her classmates wore while she was a Clawson High student.
“As a Clawson alum, you want to see what’s best for the current students because you’re paying it forward,” True said. “I think the kids deserve something that’s a few years old, not a few decades old. I know $20,000 is a lot of money to raise in a community like Clawson, but I’d think over the course of the years you’d do something to get new uniforms.”
CHS Performing Arts Boosters President Kim Hall-Brown said the uniforms have been on the radar for a while, but just cost too much.
“The Clawson Performing Arts Boosters have been working on raising funds as well, so we were very pleased to get some help,” Hall-Brown said via email. “We are also very thankful that the district was able to put the uniforms in the budget and get them ordered.
“I have been involved in the boosters for only a few years, but I believe the main reason for no uniforms in so long is budget/money. I have no idea how often athletic uniforms are purchased.
“New uniforms are needed simply because the current ones are in disrepair and can only be repaired so many times. We have been fortunate to have parents that have been able to make the alterations and repairs each year.”
The last time the Clawson marching band received new uniforms was 1989, and True believes it had been about 20 years before that when the last batch came in.
“I was kind of shocked. It wasn’t until our group said we wanted to raise money to have these uniforms replaced that they looked into putting a purchase order together,” True said. “I’m trying to figure out why it’s taken this long to get the uniforms. I can’t imagine too many communities around here are using uniforms that are 20-25 years old.
“I think having a great uniform is going to give them the mind set of being confident and successful out there.”
In an effort to raise funds, True is coordinating an Oct. 13 fundraiser at the Knights of Columbus Hall 4188, 870 N. Main, at Elmwood. From 6-9 p.m., the Class of 1992 will have a casual class reunion, but anyone with ties to Clawson – whether it be as a resident, district alumni or local businessperson – is welcome to show up from 9 p.m.-1 a.m. for a fun night of camaraderie with a cause.
“We want to make sure if we’re doing this, we (make it special). We may only have one shot at this,” True said. “I’m hoping that we’d have at least 500 people there. I just have a lot of Clawson pride and want to do basically what’s right.”
Both parts of the night have a casual dress code and request a $10 donation as an entry fee, although larger donations are welcome. Beverages and alumni merchandise will be available for sale, while a silent auction, food and music are also planned.
If successful, True said the current 75-person band could have the new uniforms as early as September, based on early registration. Admission will also be accepted at the door.
Anyone interested in registering in advance or making a donation should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Band Director Kevin Phillips and former Director James Zarzycki could not be reached for comment by press deadline.
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