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Will DCA be around in 5 years?

Will DCA be around in 5 years?  

70 members have voted

  1. 1. Will DCA be around in 5 years?

    • Yes
      25
    • No
      45


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We do have to give credit where credit is due.  The Alumni show and Mini-Corps show at the big venue were DCA inventions.  The 2009 Champs in Rochester were a 40+ corps happening (when you include the field, Alumni and Mini-Corps) and the place was a zoo all weekend.  There was  a palpable "must see" for the Mini Corps, the alumni came in droves and the locale was accessible to  the Canadian and Western NY spectators who could just about walk to the venue.  

DCA's idea for the Alumni Show, however, has grown long in the tooth,  as a concept and with the aging of the members.  While St Joe's was a full corps of yesteryear performers when they did the DCI Exhibition in 1995 and the DCA show 14 years later, those members and fans that may have been in their 50's (makes sense if their corps was strong in the late 1960's) are now ALL 75 or older.  The same goes for the members of Scout House,  Skyliners, BAC, and  Bayonne.  The audience that appreciated those moments "off the line" and "8 to 5" no longer exists.  Witness the total lack of response for Madison this year when they marched "off the line".  In 2005, that move garnered a standing ovation.  This year, it was not even recognized.  

A comparable "throwback" of 25 or 30 years TODAY takes us back to drum corps in 1995....which simply doesnt have the same nostalgic appeal.  It worked at the time.  Time for something fresh. 

Mini-corps?  Still a great idea (DCI even copied it).  But, moving it outside was a miss.  Making it a marching contest was a miss.  Having it emphasize competing with Star as opposed to promoting it as a loose, party atmosphere was a miss.  When it was a spectator-focused happening (with the bars at each corner and a chance for people to visit), it was awesome.  And with each group having the screamers in the high register, without attention to the sheets and taking itself too seriously, that's when the atmosphere invited the most people.  

DCA has to be an invitation to enjoyment.  If it's all about the corps on the field, there isnt enough history around the existing corps that allows enough people to care.  After Bucs, Bush and Cabs, there isnt much to garner past enthusiasm for old rivalries, etc.  The Hurcs and Sun people...there is little resemblance of a "senior" unit there.  Sabers, Atlanta, Fusion and Cincinnati might be good corps, but there is limited history or following.  The small corps get credit for "keeping the faith", but few people go to the show to see the small corps.   DCI's Open division has full corps in the top 5 and still have trouble selling tickets.  So it can't be "all about the corps" anymore.  

DCA has to assemble an event that appeals to people that have the wherewithal to spend both their money AND a holiday weekend.  DCI provides a guarantee of that investment.  It's a closed roof, 40 corps and a week's worth of choices.  There are many ways to get your money's worth.  

The same fresh thinking that brought the Alumni and mini corps into the fold can guarantee the DCA attendee get the same.  I say it starts with an appeal to those alumni lists and a reason to get together.  Does it make sense to have that locally?  Would Statesmen alumni be more likely to attend a reunion in Rochester than in Williamsport, PA?  Perhaps.  But they wouldnt get the CORPS and the CHAMPIONSHIPS as a backdrop...so that becomes the selling point. 

More mini corps.  Replace the Alumni event.  More of a party than just a contest.  My 02c to go with my other 02c.  

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Well said, Joey. And spot on.

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Mini corps is a lot of fun, but never drew the interest of the younger crowd. 

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12 minutes ago, Jeff Ream said:

Mini corps is a lot of fun, but never drew the interest of the younger crowd. 

Maybe if free vaping is included???  :tongue:

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So many ideas to analyze!  

If asked to identify the biggest challenge these days, I would have to say it is Labor Day Weekend. Not just for band camp interference, but also the importance of a young person starting-off the school together with friends. Being an accepted part of a peer group is more important than ever. Chatting about things on social media requires one to be part of it all, in-person. First football game, of course. Then there’s Field Hockey practice, Cheerleading, Pep Club, First Dance of the Year, etc. Or, maybe just last weekend at the beach.

 

 

 

 

 

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50 minutes ago, Fred Windish said:

So many ideas to analyze!  

If asked to identify the biggest challenge these days, I would have to say it is Labor Day Weekend. Not just for band camp interference, but also the importance of a young person starting-off the school together with friends. Being an accepted part of a peer group is more important than ever. Chatting about things on social media requires one to be part of it all, in-person. First football game, of course. Then there’s Field Hockey practice, Cheerleading, Pep Club, First Dance of the Year, etc. Or, maybe just last weekend at the beach.

 

 

 

 

 

First football game Labor Day weekend? Had some pretty good HS games on local cable over this weekend. So with Labor Day weekend conflict in PA at least the weekend before has Friday night and Saturday afternoon conflicts 

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6 minutes ago, JimF-LowBari said:

First football game Labor Day weekend? Had some pretty good HS games on local cable over this weekend. So with Labor Day weekend conflict in PA at least the weekend before has Friday night and Saturday afternoon conflicts 

I still think if DCI could be involved somehow, DCA could be moved to the same week as DCI finals (maybe in conjunction with open class.) Might be a dumb thought but the audience and venue is ready made and the current events are well run. That gives it a head start. DCI is far ahead on marketing as well and it ties the whole concept of a huge "Drum Corps party spectacular" concept. In theory it might have merit. I'm not so sure it works in practice because of housing and rehersal space. Probably more I'm missing.

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15 minutes ago, JimF-LowBari said:

First football game Labor Day weekend? Had some pretty good HS games on local cable over this weekend. So with Labor Day weekend conflict in PA at least the weekend before has Friday night and Saturday afternoon conflicts 

So much for moving DCA to the weekend before Labor Day, right?  LOL

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25 minutes ago, Fran Haring said:

So much for moving DCA to the weekend before Labor Day, right?  LOL

Yep Friday after work it was... “let’s see what’s on tv tonight...” Harrisburg vs Coatesville and 2 other schools within 10 miles of me... 😯

Edited by JimF-LowBari

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If membership is mostly post-college (and it WAS) scheduling isnt that big a problem.  But DCA isnt 24-30 year old former junior members anymore.   

Membership is mostly younger students (admit it), so the DCA schedule has to accommodate return to school for HS and college age people.  That is mid-August.  

There is no real discussion that can start without this as a base line.  Unless DCA suddenly attracts kids that aged out of junior from 2013-15 (and there are fewer of them than ever, especially on the east coast) then making this a bona fide WEEKEND activity for LOCAL kids who can actually PARTICIPATE without pissing off their band program is the only way to go.  

Do you compete with DCI weekend? Of course not.  That leaves the weekend after.  A night show on Sunday is a tougher proposition without benefit of the holiday, but Kingston, Barnum, or PA still bring a crowd.  It's 14 corps, for God's sake.  Get em together, call it a Championship, and get the kids back to school.  

Here's the schedule:  

Friday Night Individuals start at 8, finish by 11.  Everyone is in town anyway. If that isnt workable, nix individuals.  We're fighting for the teams and circuit, anyway.   Substitute could be an alumni party.  Wear your colors.  Cash bar.  

Saturday Prelims start at 10, finished by 3.  Finals ticket gets you into prelims.  Local band kids get in free (Mom and Dad can pony up, but $25 sounds reasonable). 

To make finals more interesting, no scores.  Have a draw for appearance order on the 50 yard line with the top 5 being guaranteed a top 5 spot.   If this idea sucks, and it kinda does, people will still be TALKING about it.  

Saturday Night Mini Corps and Alumni and a Corps Mingle with wristbands...over 21, under 21.    Can start at 5 and go til whenever.  Needs a name.   

Sunday finals start at 5.  Corps that dont make finals get an exhibition run (because one and done SUCKS) so everyone attending is guaranteed two runs.  Trust me, that has meaning...the 10th place corps was taking 10th anyway.  This is NOT as big a deal as it's made out to be.  

Show done by 10.  Buses roll at 11.  Anyone that wants to hang til Monday?  They can plan that ahead of time.  Rates are cheaper anyway if its not a holiday weekend.  

Nobody misses band camp (that's usually during the week), fewer kids miss school or the start of school.  There's PLENTY of time during the season to get some evaluations and do some show development.  Win-win.  

My 02c to go with the other 04. 😛

 

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