Scout House In Perry 200 Grand Patriotic Parade
Preston Scout House Alumni Band, of Cambridge, will cross the Canada/U.S. border to bring music, instead of muskets, to the streets of Erie, Pennsylvania during the Perry 200 Grand Patriotic Parade on Saturday May 25, celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Lake Erie, one of the decisive events of the War of 1812. Parade organizers expect 100,000 spectators to line the streets to enjoy Scout House and more than 20 other bands including the Mummers String Band of Philadelphia, War of 1812 re-enactors and giant helium-filled cartoon figure and patriotic balloons.
The parade commemorates the naval victory of Oliver Hazard Perry, who commanded a fleet of two brigs and seven smaller vessels built near Erie in the summer of 1813. On September 10, 1813 after almost being overwhelmed by the British squadron under the direction of Commander Robert Barclay, Perry captured Barclay’s entire squadron, giving American forces control of Lake Erie.
Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett will serve as grand marshal of the Erie parade, expected to be the largest public celebration in the city’s history. Following the 1.8-mile long parade, Scout House will perform a special concert for local armed forces veterans.
Scout House has already marched in another significant War of 1812 anniversary parade, held last summer in Fort Erie, Ontario. General Rick Hillier, Canada’s former Chief of the Defence Staff, the highest-ranking position in the Canadian Forces, saluted from the reviewing stand as Scout House and other units marched past. The parade was one of the first Canadian federal government special events marking the 200th anniversary of the outbreak of war. General Isaac Brock died on October, 1812 in the first battle of the war on the heights above Queenston, but Canadian, British and Indian forces succeeded in forcing American soldiers back across the Niagara River. That battle is now seen as one of the most important nation-building events in Canadian history.
Scout House will be marching in several other major parades in southern Ontario this season, with festival themes considerably lighter than a war anniversary. The Band will march and perform in concert in Woodstock, Ontario on May 20 to help celebrate the Victoria Day holiday, which originated in Canada as a salute to Queen Victoria, Britain’s longest reigning monarch.
In June, Scout House will again march in Burlington’s Sound of Music Festival grand parade then perform in concert with the Burlington Teen Tour Band. The Sound of Music Festival is Canada’s largest free music festival, featuring four days of live concerts including jazz, rock, folk, pop, blues, Latin, big band, Celtic and country music offered at 10 performance areas downtown and along the waterfront.
The following week, Scout House will perform in the 52nd annual Rose Festival Parade in Welland. The giant parade is the final event in the festival, which starts on the first weekend of June and winds up with the parade on Sunday, June 23.
One of the highlights of the Scout House parade schedule takes place when the Band marches the 1-mile length of Preston’s main street on Canada Day July 1. A large, enthusiastic crowd of spectators traditionally lines both sides of the street along the entire parade route, beginning at the Preston Memorial Auditorium parking lot where parade units assemble, winding up at the entrance to Riverside Park at the other end of town.
Scout House also has a busy field show schedule this summer, with performances scheduled in Hornell and Rochester, New York; Lewisburg, Pennsylvania; Oshawa, Ontario and the 4th annual Scout House Invitational Tattoo, at University Stadium in Waterloo, Ontario on Saturday, August 10. The Tattoo line up includes Hawthorne Caballeros Alumni Drum and Bugle Corps, Hawthorne, New Jersey; Les Diplomates du Quebec Alumni Drum and Bugle Corps, Quebec City, Quebec; Mighty St. Joe’s Alumni Drum and Bugle Corps, LeRoy, New York; Empire Statesmen Drum and Bugle Corps, Rochester, New York; Optimists Alumni Drum and Bugle Corps, Toronto, Ontario; Toronto Signals, Toronto, Ontario; Burlington Teen Tour Band, Burlington, Ontario; Preston Scout House Alumni Band and Preston Scout House Cadets youth drum line.
The Band’s final field show of the season will take place in Annapolis, Maryland when Scout House performs for the 11th time since 2002 in the Alumni Spectacular field show during the Drum Corps Associates (DCA) championship tournament on Labour Day weekend.
For more information about Scout House Alumni Band, contact Activities Director Nancy Weiler at telephone (519) 653-3376, email prestonscouthouseband [dot] adm [at] sympatico [dot] ca or visit the Web site at http://www.scouthouseband.com/
Information about Preston Scout House Cadets is available from Del Barclay at: gascap [at] golden [dot] net or Jim Pratt at: kusankusho [at] hotmail [dot] com