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January 17, 2019
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Rancho Cotate Band fundraiser BBQ

  • Charlie Gomez, drum major for the Rancho Cotate marching band, leads his band onto the field during their Field Show & BBQ fundraiser. The band and the choirs performed at their fundraiser which was held at Cougar Stadium on Saturday. Money raised helps provide equipment, etc., for the band and will help to get the band to Disneyland so they can play and march down Main Street. Jane Peleti

By: Lanny Lowery
October 19, 2018

The Rancho Cotate High School choir and band are at it again:  raising money so that they can take their great sound somewhere.  This time they will spread their joyous music to the greatest little kingdom on earth, Disneyland.

Tim Decker, the Rancho maestro, bandleader, and choir director since 2005, wants to raise the money to send these young musicians to Anaheim.  There the band will march down the most famous Main Street in America.  The choir will perform in a show.  And both groups will make recordings in the Disneyland Studio.  The students will have a professionally recorded memory of their sounds and this wonderful trip.

Why the fundraiser?  Many people just assume that the school district pays for these musical trips. Not so, not one cent comes from district funds.  Over the years, fundraisers, contributions by boosters, and donations by parents and music lovers have sent the elite marching band and well known choir to such places as Carnegie Hall (March of 2014), Washington D.C. for the rededication of the Lincoln Memorial (2010), and many times to the John Wooden Basketball Tournament in southern California.  All of these exciting trips have been paid for by fundraisers and donations.

Saturday’s event, deviously miscalled a barbeque, actually offered tacos from Los Tres Chilis, owned by the family of band alumni Carlos Guiterrez.  The dish included beans and rice and agua frescas.  The band and choir also performed to a sold out audience of two hundred supporters and music lovers. One other fundraiser for this trip is happening throughout the month of October.  Members of the music department are selling Kozlowski pies.

 Future band and choir performances will offer would be donors the opportunity to contribute to this trip.  Both the choir and the band will perform at the December 1st tree lighting ceremony in Rohnert Park.  Later in December, musicians will perform at the Mark Pippin Bike Giveaway.  The traditional winter concert will be held at the Rancho Cotate Multiuse Room at 7 P.M. on December 11th and December 13th.

Community contributions to band and choir trips have been a tradition since the 1970s, when the band made its first trip to Washington D.C..  Rohnert Park and Cotati have always supported our young music makers.  More fundraisers will be announced soon.