Cape Central band gets funding boost

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Central High School's band members have some new instruments as a result of a donation by the Kiwanis Club and support from the community.

Last fall, Kiwanis Club member Jim Hillin contacted band director Neil Casey expressing concern about the band's needs to replace and repair instruments for students. Hillin was aware of the needs because of his wife's position as band booster president.

Among the concerns Lynn Hillin had told her husband about was that the cost to replace school instruments would be more than $100,000--or $97,000 more than the current band budget of $2,700.

Hillin, a Kiwanis Club member of 35 years, knew that the club would make contributions to community organizations in need, so he asked Casey to provide projected costs to replace a few needed instruments. Casey gave Hillin a figure of $9,700. Kiwanis Club members agreed to give the organization $5,000, and issued a challenge to the Cape Central Band Boosters to match the amount.

In March, the band boosters met the challenge with help from community businesses, parents and supporters, and the Kiwanis Club followed up with a second $5,000 donation.

Most of the donations given to organizations by the Kiwanis Club come from funds the club makes operating the Monday night bingo game at Bingo World.

Bassoon, tenor sax bought

A bassoon and tenor sax were purchased with the Kiwanis Club donation, because these instruments had not been replaced in 22 years. The money was also used to refurbish two baritone saxophones and purchase some percussion equipment.

Currently, Casey and the other Central band directors are assessing the needs of the program to spend the remainder of the donation to best meet band needs.

To donate to the band boosters, call the high school at 335-8228.

335-6611, extension 133

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