Northern California Band Review

Topics and polls that cover the overall marching band activity

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Northern California Band Review

Post by AnotnioEscobedo » Mon Feb 23, 2015 10:14 am

Hello everyone,

It's been awhile since I've been on the forums. I have been rather busy these last 7 years and for those of you interested in a spring review please read the following letter from my good friend and fellow Music Educator, Jennifer Doherty.

Antonio Escobedo
Holy Spirit School
Director of Bands

Dear Band Director,

My name is Jennifer Doherty, and I am the music director at Crystal Middle School in Suisun City, CA. I would like to invite you to bring your groups and participate in the revitalized, “Northern California Band Festival” on Saturday, May 2, 2015.

In the late 1960’s-late 1980’s, the Northern California Band Festival used to be a very large Spring band review, involving 40-60 schools, hosted and sponsored by the City of Fairfield Chamber of Commerce and the three local highschools (Fairfield HS, Armijo HS, Vanden HS).

The parade route had always been in downtown Fairfield. In its last year, the event was moved to nearby Fairfield HS. The following year, this same parade route became the one used for the Tournament of Champions Fall band review, that has been hosted by Fairfield HS ever since. And that is also the year that the Armijo Band Review began in the Spring.

With the Armijo Band Review getting cancelled this year, I thought it might be time to try to bring back a larger community based event. This kind of event doesn’t just rely on the efforts of one school band booster organization, but instead it is a coming together of support from multiple organizations. My husband, Bill Doherty, and I have been involved in the Fairfield-Suisun community for 30 years as music educators. Between his days as band director at Vanden HS and my days as a local elementary and middle school music director, we remember how wonderful it was to have more of the greater community involved in the event, and I’m hoping to bring that back.

I’m happy to announce that in pursuit of doing this; we have gotten tremendous support and enthusiasm. The event is now listed on the NCBA website, replacing what was the Armijo Review, originally scheduled on the same date. The Northern California Band Festival is being sponsored by the Fairfield Main Street Association, which is the association for all of the Downtown Fairfield Businesses. We are also in the process of having this event become one of the City of Fairfield’s main sponsored events as well.

In addition to the Crystal Music Boosters hosting, we will be calling upon other numerous organizations for their involvement as well. I know that it is rare to have a band review hosted by a middle school, but I want you to know that I have been very fortunate to have the support and shared documents from the Fairfield HS music director, Brian Swetland, who’s organization has so successfully hosted the annual Fall Tournament of Champions. I’m confident that we will be able to put on a wonderful event for you and your students!

I’m excited to inform you that we have secured the use of the Fairfield Downtown Theatre and the Fairfield Community Center Assembly Hall for the concert and jazz band venues. (this will be a lot nicer than a school gym venue). Attached you will see the layout of the proposed
parade route and also pictures of the various buildings and streets. The streets to be used for parade warm up and competition will be Kentucky, Great Jones and Texas Street. Not to worry, we will also be offering a street percussion competition as well. Awards are planned to occur at a beautiful large grass hill and pond area located behind the Fairfield Community Center. You can take a look at the following links to get a sense of these performance venues. ... lobID=4968

The trend has been that fewer schools have been doing Spring events, mostly due to budget constraints. As a middle school director, who had the elementary program taken away with budget cuts, I know that we really need these Spring events to happen to help support students who aren’t ready to do it in the Fall.

Thank you for taking the time to read this long email. Further explanation was needed since this event is one that is being changed from previous years.

Please help support this effort, by submitting an application and bringing your performance groups to participate. You may email me to request an application. For planning purposes, I would greatly appreciate it if you could email me back letting me know if you are considering submitting an application or not.

I look forward to us joining together and making this a wonderful experience for our students.


Jennifer Doherty :)
Crystal Middle School
Suisun City, Ca

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