Sumter band students may miss out on exciting trip

By Logan Smith - email | bio

SUMTER, SC (WIS) - The Sumter High School band is playing a memorable concert in front of an international audience, but some of the aspiring musicians may miss it.

In less than three weeks, the band is going to play at sea world in Orlando. But the band hasn't been able to raise all the money, and now dozens of students may be left at home.

Marching band is hard work. "A lot of hours in the sun, in the heat doing basics and trying to prepare for our season and put on the best show we can," said Sumter High School Band drum major Najja Lyle.

But hard work pays off, in this case as a trip to Sea World to play outside the Shamu exhibit. "This will be a critical turning point in our program, because we're really excited about the direction it's heading," said director Doug Goodman.

And the band is paying for the trip all by themselves. "Budgets are so tight right now and I know everyone's cutting back, so any time we do a special trip like this, it's fully on us to raise that money for the kids to go," said Goodman.

"Everybody's working hard, you know we've done fruit fundraisers, getting help from local businesses," said Lyle.

But with less than three weeks to go, the trip is only 65% funded, Which means dozens of students may miss out. That doesn't fit with the Goodman's plans for the band. "The big goal for us is to really get more students to have the opportunity to grow musically," he said. "Music is such a powerful thing, and every kid that has the opportunity to experience it, I know they'll love it."

And like a song needs more than just a melody, a band needs all of its members.

If you'd like to help the band out, the school's number is 481-4480.

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