Empire Statesmen Second To Bucs At AL Championship
Rochester’s Empire Statesmen are steadily closing the gap between themselves and still-undefeated Reading Buccaneers, finishing a strong second to the Bucs in the Parade of Champions American Legion National Championship contest in Scranton, Pennsylvania on August 16. Statesmen sailed ahead of Hawthorne Caballeros and Connecticut Hurricanes in the second-last weekend of regular contests in the Drum Corps Associates (DCA) season.
Buccaneers scored 93.238, with Empire Statesmen just 1.813 points behind at 91.425. The last time the two met, at the Cavalcade of Champions in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania on July 19, the Statesmen trailed the Bucs by 4.2 points.
Caballeros were third in Scranton, with 90.850. Connecticut Hurricanes were close behind in fourth position with 90.675. Bushwackers were fifth with 86.663, with Syracuse Brigadiers close behind in sixth position with 86.038. Rochester Crusaders were seventh with 82.375.
With just one weekend remaining in the regular season contest schedule, Empire Statesmen, Hawthorne Caballeros and Connecticut Hurricanes have all defeated each other since the contest season began in mid-June. The Buccaneers, defending DCA champions, have finished on top in all seven of their contests so far in 2008. The Statesmen and Buccaneers won’t meet on the field again until the DCA championship tournament in Rochester on Labor Day weekend.
On August 23, Empire Statesmen, Hurricanes, Bushwackers, Caballeros and Excelsior will compete in West Haven, Connecticut in Fanfare 2008, sponsored by the Hurricanes. Also on August 23, the Buccaneers will be competing at home against Syracuse Brigadiers, Rochester Crusaders, Fusion Core of Rahway, New Jersey, Dansville White Sabers and Kingston Grenadiers in the Big Sounds in Motion contest in Reading, Pennsylvania.
The 2008 contest season winds up with Empire Statesmen sponsoring the DCA championship tournament for the third year in a row, running from Friday evening August 29 to Sunday evening August 31 on Labor Day weekend. The weekend events begin with Individual and Ensemble and popular Mini-Corps contests at two downtown locations, Riverside Convention Center and the Clarion Hotel, and an old-fashioned outdoor street party between the two locations. Friday evening events are free of charge, and have been attracting larger crowds each year.
The World Drum Corps Hall of Fame, founded in 1976 by the late Vince Bruni, who also founded the Empire Statesmen in 1983, will hold its 33rd annual induction ceremonies Saturday August 30 during a noon luncheon at the downtown Rochester Plaza Hotel. Members of the public are welcome to attend the social hour beginning at 11 am on the mezzanine level, to mingle with members and new inductees and to view memorabilia dating back to the 1940s.
The DCA preliminaries for Class A and Open Class corps take place Saturday afternoon and evening at PAETEC Park stadium, just a few blocks north of the downtown business district. Starting Sunday morning at 10 am, nine of the most popular alumni drum and bugle corps from Canada and the United States will participate in the Alumni Spectacular concert and field show at PAETEC Park. The final competition, to determine this year’s Class A and Open Class champions takes place Sunday evening, August 31.
Since first competing in 1983, the Empire Statesmen have won five DCA world championships, four American Legion national titles, and the triple crown: the DCA and American Legion titles and the World Show Band championship in London, England all in the same year in 1998, when the field show featured music from West Side Story. Empire Statesmen have finished in the top four during DCA championship tournaments for 20 consecutive years.
The Empire Statesmen drum and bugle corps is a self-supporting independent group that represents the city of Rochester across the United States and Canada and as far abroad as Europe, the Caribbean and South America.
For more information about any aspect of the Empire Statesmen organization, call (585) 266-2232 or visit the Empire Statesmen Web site at: www.statesmen.org