KeithHall

Positive Brainstorming/DCA

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I would like to correct something I stated inelegantly yesterday:

16 hours ago, cixelsyd said:

Cost and time are NOT barriers to DCI participation. 

16 hours ago, lcarlton said:

Respectfully, Cost and Time are a HUGE barrier to participation 

What I was thinking, but failing to say clearly, is that the cost/time to participate in DCI is not an immutable, $5,000 dues/11-week-full-time minimum, as some world-class corps choose to do.  Open-class corps range from full-tour to done-in-one-week.  Whatever cost/time obligation the single-week season entails is still a "barrier" to participation, but it is a much smaller barrier than the world-class commitment.

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15 hours ago, Weaklefthand4ever said:

DCA should be figuring out some sort of way to join forces with DCI to leverage their ability to promote and advertise the activity.

Yes.

Along those lines, I had a passing thought that DCA should have an intern program like DCI does, to provide cheap labor during the summer for tasks like all these marketing ideas being brainstormed here.  But to have interns, you need regular employees to guide them... and DCA just does not have that infrastructure.

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8 hours ago, Jeff Ream said:

easiest marketing approach:

 

Come here and learn. Go to DCI and apply. Then come back here and show he next generation.

And I think that's the easy and most elegant answer. I don't want DCA to be seen as a "B" or feeder corps. But the reality is that it's a stepping stone for the younger members who want to go to DCI. If you're too old to march DCI then you can still have that sense of drum corps family and continue to march while having real life comittments. After you are no longer able to march (for whatever reason,) you could volunteer time and talent to DCA. The model is there. We aren't exactly reinventing the wheel here. 

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1 hour ago, cixelsyd said:

I would like to correct something I stated inelegantly yesterday:

What I was thinking, but failing to say clearly, is that the cost/time to participate in DCI is not an immutable, $5,000 dues/11-week-full-time minimum, as some world-class corps choose to do.  Open-class corps range from full-tour to done-in-one-week.  Whatever cost/time obligation the single-week season entails is still a "barrier" to participation, but it is a much smaller barrier than the world-class commitment.

That's a fair statement. And just to put it out there, if the pieces are placed appropriately on the board, even those of us who can't march anymore can still participate. One of the things that has become more and more clear to me over the last few years is that there is enough volunteer talent out there that DCA doesn't need to pay a soul to get the right infrastructure in place to grow the activity. DCA and it's member corps could EASILY give up 1/10,000th of a percent of control and allow a network of volunteers and interns to grow the brand. Yes, there would have to be checks and balances in place, but the talent and work ethic is there. I can't march anymore (Thanks Premier drums!!....and yes Jeff, I know you marched Stingrays which weighed approximately 600 lbs so you're probably worse than I am back wise...,) but I would commit hours to help a corps or the association so I could stay involved. I'm sure I'm not alone. 

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Just thinking back a few decades.......

 

     I remember in my younger days in Junior corps how I disliked Senior corps. What I saw was some corps "stealing" our better players and there we are stuck rebuilding. I hated DCA back then.

Forward to 1990 and being asked by both Empire Statesmen and Rochester Crusaders to march and seeing how fun and hard it was!

10 years later I went back to Crusaders and had a few fun years with them. Got to learn from some fantastic people ( Donny Allen, Steve Cooley, Chris Bernotas and Jimmy Steele). 

DCA was different and is different than the Senior corps of the 1960's and 1970's.

There is an education there for the marching members!

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2 hours ago, Weaklefthand4ever said:

And I think that's the easy and most elegant answer. I don't want DCA to be seen as a "B" or feeder corps. But the reality is that it's a stepping stone for the younger members who want to go to DCI. If you're too old to march DCI then you can still have that sense of drum corps family and continue to march while having real life comittments. After you are no longer able to march (for whatever reason,) you could volunteer time and talent to DCA. The model is there. We aren't exactly reinventing the wheel here. 

DCA corps have been applying this philosophy for years, it's just far more noticeable now. I know with Westshore it started in the late 70's...kids came in, helped build the corps, did some years in DCI, then came back. It continued in my years of 89-96. I know Bucs did the same for a whole lotta years back then too. Steel City as well. I know the year I taught at Empire there were several members that took the same approach.

It's the way the world is now. The older folks aren't marching for a variety of reasons, not all are show design related. I couldn't march now if i wanted to...between my job and family commitments...nope. It's not a 9-5 M-F World anymore. I know many people that just aren't willing to leave the wife and kids at home to go play drum corps anymore. I think of the many things in my life Dad missed because he was playing drum corps, and i don't hold it against him, but I'm not doing that to my daughter. 

 

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2 hours ago, Weaklefthand4ever said:

That's a fair statement. And just to put it out there, if the pieces are placed appropriately on the board, even those of us who can't march anymore can still participate. One of the things that has become more and more clear to me over the last few years is that there is enough volunteer talent out there that DCA doesn't need to pay a soul to get the right infrastructure in place to grow the activity. DCA and it's member corps could EASILY give up 1/10,000th of a percent of control and allow a network of volunteers and interns to grow the brand. Yes, there would have to be checks and balances in place, but the talent and work ethic is there. I can't march anymore (Thanks Premier drums!!....and yes Jeff, I know you marched Stingrays which weighed approximately 600 lbs so you're probably worse than I am back wise...,) but I would commit hours to help a corps or the association so I could stay involved. I'm sure I'm not alone. 

with a sleep machine, weight loss, and Becky at Elements massage and her every 3 weeks readjusting of my back, the knees are more my issue anymore.

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4 hours ago, cixelsyd said:

I would like to correct something I stated inelegantly yesterday:

What I was thinking, but failing to say clearly, is that the cost/time to participate in DCI is not an immutable, $5,000 dues/11-week-full-time minimum, as some world-class corps choose to do.  Open-class corps range from full-tour to done-in-one-week.  Whatever cost/time obligation the single-week season entails is still a "barrier" to participation, but it is a much smaller barrier than the world-class commitment.

I think DCI open class has hit its niche. No, $4k-6k of worlds is not feasible for many.  Hence why many are marching fewer years than before.  But I think also of why open class is growing.  $1200-3k is a little more sustainable.  But the schedule, to me, is pretty feasible, and designed around school schedules.  You have one camp a month from nov to june.  then move in early july and are done with tour in 6 weeks.   Or you have a camp week around the 4th.  and then move-in/tour for the last two weeks of july and two august weeks for championships.  With your own open class tour of exotic locations like Sheffield, PA, and Avon Lake, OH.  The cities aren't amazing, but the show crowds are filling more every year. 

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Lots of good suggestions here. However, I continue to believe until DCA ends its season earlier than Labor Day Weekend, finding an increased supply of youthful new members will be a struggle.

 

Edited by Fred Windish

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1 hour ago, Fred Windish said:

Lots of good suggestions here. However, I continue to believe until DCA ends its season earlier than Labor Day Weekend, finding an increased supply of youthful new members will be a struggle.

 

i think everyone here agrees on that. but that's only one piece of a huge puzzle

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