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MyKids#1Fan

Shoutout to the Parents

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I haven't seen a thread for parents, so I'm throwing my hat in the ring!

With the cost of tuition, flights to auditions and camps, and saying goodbye to your kid for 3 months....we make a few sacrifices too!!

As a proud mom from CA, I was only able to see one show, in Atlanta this year.......but it was the best day of my summer!!! I wanted to steal my son and drive away!!!

Any other parents out there care to share???

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Definitely. In 2014 I returned to DCI fandom having a show in my hometown to go to while visiting my parents. Sat next to a BD mom who was 'on the tour for awhile' following her son. But she'd also become a 'tour mom' to friends of her son in various corps from his previous marching years and friendships made on the tour.

I was totally impressed with her support to not only sacrifice the money to support her son, but also to latch on to the tour as it came through her part of the country and be a mom for kids she didn't really know.

Tip of the hat to all the parents!

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Hi, MyKids#1Fan! I, too am a mom from CA... but I call myself an Alumni Mom now! My son marched for 3 years, and has been a percussion tech ever since his age-out. I make it to the Stanford show every summer and will forever be obsessed with this activity.

We don't have the financial concerns of tour anymore, but we still miss our son and worry about his travels all summer long. We definitely see this competitive activity from another perspective, and have an awesome insight to the inner workings of the people on staff with a corps.

Love it all! Will always love it! And, just want to give a shout out to the techs who are also giving their blood sweat and tears all summer long!

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Slightly different perspective in that we wanted this summer to be about our son and him having the experience of a lifetime without having mom/dad too close. Definitely not judging anyone who feels different and/or wants to spend more time with them. I did volunteer a couple days on tour when they swung around our part of the country, but tried to keep low profile while there (mostly shuttling staff around, running errands, etc.). Personally I had a blast while helping out and can now spot our son no matter where in the show they are from having seen it so much during rehearsal. The smell of diesel, sunscreen, and sweat definitely brought back a few memories!

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The smell of diesel, sunscreen, and sweat definitely brought back a few memories!

To this day, one of my favorite smells is the combination of diesel exhaust, donuts, and coffee, while stopped at one of the big truck stops. Memories indeed.

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When these young adults are away at college all year, the opportunity of volunteering for a week becomes a bonding moment for both member and parent, particularly for the parent to see how adult the offspring has become (mingling, responsiblities, working super hard, perhaps even showing different sides of personality.) Most members enjoy it unless parent starts to fatigue on tour, feel lonely on tour (you never talk to me or spend time with me, you're always practicing or hanging with your section, girlfriend, boyfriend, sponsors or writing band drills for Spandex Middle School Marching Aliens.)

When the member is still a high schooler, the challenge is to allow the member the space to grow into being that young adult and to experience the responsibility and consequences of life. With experience comes mistakes, but from mistakes can come the learning or realization of wisdom. Helicopter/shadow parenting becomes a hurdle not a help. Tour is not the place for parents to escape from their marriage or loneliness or family squabbles at the expense of the kids; same goes for staff members, faculty, and even admin..Tour can become the opportunity to experience the growth of the offspring in amazing ways.

I was on tour for over twenty-five years in several capacities for several units. I have observed all of the above and have heard many stories and interpretations of the same story.. Each family and member are as different as night and day.

Edited by xandandl

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My daughter is 1, so she's a ways away from marching, but I do have a story to share.

My freshman year of high school, my band had a student teacher who had marched a corps, and the moment he showed the freshman marching band members a drum corps video, I was hooked. That video was one of many reasons I marched, but without question, the first. I'm still friends with that student teacher (who now lives across the country and has been teaching band for years now) via Facebook. This year his son is marching in the same corps he marched in, and I guess he also took on a leadership role with the corps this year as well. Via Facebook status updates I've seen from it, it looks like he's trying to give his son as much of that you're-on-your-own drum corps experience as possible, but at all of the major shows he and his son have taken a picture together, both in their corps jackets, and it's super cool to see!

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I was you between the years of 2010 and 2014. My son marched five years with the same corps. Honestly, they were some of the best years of my life. I went to Indy four times and it was an absolute thrill watching my son march out there. I loved going to Military Park and watching the brass and batteries warm up. I loved the whole scene - the late night print outs of recap sheets (when you could get them) and the subsequent discussions in hotel courtyards about said sheets - sometimes well into the night.

I also volunteered in just about every capacity a parent could volunteer for the organization, including a short stint on tour in the cook truck - a must for every drum corps parent IMO.

Having a music and performance background myself, it didn't take much to turn me into a super fan of drum corps. Now you can not tear me away from this activity. I should add that my son is spending the weekend with me and we'll be watching both nights of Allentown together. Can't wait!

Take it all in. Your son's eligible years will end soon enough and then you will miss it.

Edited by luv4corps
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Next year is my son's age out and I'm going to have to find another hobby besides stalking DCP!!!

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Next year is my son's age out and I'm going to have to find another hobby besides stalking DCP!!!

You never know -- if he loves Drum Corps, he might just tech somewhere and it all starts again.

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