New Castle News

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February 14, 2014

District mulls buying new band uniforms

NEW CASTLE — Members of the New Castle school district’s marching band hope to be looking spiffier next year.

Band director Nick Yoho made a proposal to the school board Monday to buy new band uniforms at a total cost of $52,188 for 110 uniforms.

If the district would prepay, it could receive a 3 percent discount, making the total cost $50,622, or $460 per uniform, Yoho said.

The district’s band uniforms are 11 years old, he said, noting they are the oldest uniforms in the county. The white piping on them is turning gray from repeated visits to the dry cleaners, he said. The hats are broken, raincoats are in poor condition and they look worn out and dated, he pointed out.

The district is scheduled to host the Lawrence County Marching Band Festival this year, he said, and he would like to have the new uniforms in time for that event.

The band is a visual representation for the district and the community, Yoho told the board.

He estimated band uniforms typically last about 10 years.

Yoho said the band has 72 members, and next year it is projected to have 80 to 85. An additional 25 are needed to accommodate a variety of sizes, he said.

“I’m pleased and proud that the band has grown,” he said. “We have a musical reputation.”

He estimated it takes three and a half to four months for the order to be filled, so the uniforms must be ordered by March in order to have them by August.

The board members and administration agreed to consider his proposal.

Superintendent John J. Sarandrea said this week the administration “will have to crunch some numbers” and look at the budget before deciding whether the purchase would be made this year.

“Obviously, the band is growing and is a vital core of what we offer in New Castle,” he said, adding he expects the matter will be discussed by the school board before the end of next month.

(Email: dwachter@ncnewsonline.com)

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