Letter to the Editor

Band is big community asset

Sunday, March 14, 2004

To the editor:

I want to voice my concern over the possibility of a lack of funding for our municipal band and show my support for what I consider to be a worthwhile and integral part of our community.

In a well-rounded community, the arts need similar consideration to other recreational items. It was distressing to see the negative comments in Speak Out recently about the band. Cape Girardeau is blessed with many talented musicians. We should be glad they are willing to share their time and talents with the community. The band members I know are kind, humble individuals who want to share their God-given talents. Of course, there are costs involved to be able to do that.

Studies show that exposure to the arts while we are young increases academic performance, increases test scores, increases self-esteem and encourages community participation and volunteerism. The arts are capable of breaking down generational barriers. The enjoyment derived from the arts has been shown to improve health and life expectancy.

Our city has spent money to encourage tourism. I support this effort. But to think of the possibility of discontinuing funding for the band makes me shake my head. The band encourages tourism and does a wealth of good for Cape.

I do feel the band can and should help with its funding. The possibility of corporate sponsors should be pursued. And I think there should be a donation box available during each performance.


Cape Girardeau