General Butler Vagabonds To Have Reunion
Alumni of the General Butler Vagabonds Drum and Bugle Corps from Lyndora, Pennsylvania are planning a reunion of all current and former corps members, volunteers and staff at The Vagabond Hall, Saturday June 9th, 2012, 7 PM.
Cost is $20/person with checks made to the order of, and received by May 31st, to: Frank Yurkovich, 407 Bessemer Avenue, Lyndora, PA 16045. To contact Frank via email: yurkfr at zoominternet dot net.
With newly found energy, many of the Vagabonds’ Alumni have been reconnected and rekindling longtime friendships through a Facebook Group http://www.facebook.com/groups/5252106958 that was started by Deanne Heller, GBV Pit Percussion 1995–2000.
The focus of this reunion is to get everyone who ever had a connection with the organization from 1966 through present, to be in one room, enjoy each other’s company, share stories and build Alumni Support for the entire Vagabonds organization — especially on the news of the recent passing of Founder and President Andrew Yaracs, Jr.
- 46 years ago The General Richard Butler Vagabonds Junior Drum and Bugle Corps was founded February 16, 1966, by Andrew Yaracs, Jr., Walter Brown, Alexander Shott and Butler City Police Officer, Leo Burgess, with a mission dedicated to the youth of Butler County, and remains the only continually operating drum and bugle corps organization in Western Pennsylvania.
- The corps’ unique name was chosen by the listeners of a 1966 WBUT-1050AM Radio Contest, by station owner Larry Berg, to honor General Richard Butler (1743–1791) an officer in the Continental Army in the American Revolutionary War, for which the County and City of Butler, Pennsylvania are also named.
- Founded as an all-boys corps, the Vagabonds became coed in 1972.
- The Vagabonds Drum and Bugle Corps has always focused their success by creating a solid music training and character building program for their membership, and have always held less of an emphasis of measuring success by scores and placements.
- The Vagabonds have always prided themselves on being a financially sound, not-for-profit organization, with a successful BINGO program based at the corps hall in Lyndora, PA — because of this solid financial footing, the Vagabonds have had not membership dues or tour fees since the 1980s, making membership in the corps FREE for all members.
- The Vagabonds Organization was the main sponsor of the American International Open Drum and Bugle Corps Competition held yearly at the Butler High School Football Stadium. The “AIO” was one of the highest prestige international drum and corps events in the 1970s, 80s and 90s.
- Over the last 46 years the Vagabonds have participated in field contests and parades in 38 states in the USA and Canada.
- The Vagabonds won the US Open “Class A” Championship in Marion, Ohio in 1969, 1970, and 1972.
- The Vagabonds Drum and Bugle Corps was the best marching and playing military unit at the National VFW Parades: 1990 Baltimore, MD; 1991 New Orleans, LA; 1992 Indianapolis, IN; and 1993 in Dallas, TX.
- The Vagabonds were members of Drum Corps East in the 1970s and 1980s.
- The Vagabonds were members of Drum Corps Midwest organization in the 1990s, where they had 3 successful years competing in division III, winning the title of most improved corps in 1998.
- 1975 DCI Open Class 23rd place obtaining Full Membership in the DCI Governing Body (a huge accomplishment at that time).
- 1998 DCI Division III Finalist, 6th Place – 1998 DCI Div. III Spirit of Disney Award Winner
- 1999 DCI Division III Finalist, 3rd Place – Bronze Medal
- 2000 DCI Division III Finalist, 4th Place