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09-08-03

Hello Pep Band Supporters!!!

Now that the school year has started, FVPB thought it would be a good idea to update you on the Pep Band's progress and the steps that FVPB is taking to support in the Band. In addition, we wanted to let you know about upcoming FVPB events.

* FVPB IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS

We are pleased to report that FVPB is off to a great start! We currently have over 1,500 supporters, including over 1,000 UVA alumni. Through meetings with key people, our advertisement in the Fall 2003 Alumni News, and other public outreach, people on Grounds know who we are and what we stand for. We intend to continue our growth as word spreads about what has happened to the Pep Band and FVPB's goals. We will focus on fund raising to support the Pep Band. The Pep Band is planning its schedule for 2003-04 and needs support to replace funding previously provided by the Athletic Department. The Pep Band has already arranged a trip to New York City to perform with the Columbia University Marching Band, which is being made possible by financial support from FVPB!

* FVPB PRESENTATION ON THE ROTUNDA STEPS

On August 23, 2003, FVPB publicly announced its formation during an event on the Rotunda steps. The event was covered by five media outlets including WVIR Channel 29, WINA news radio, the Daily Progress, and the C-Ville Weekly. During the event, Ed Hardy of FVPB presented Pep Band Director Scott Hayes with a giant check for $23.50 -- an amount intended to correspond with the $23.5 million gift made by Carl and Hunter Smith in April for a new performing arts center and the new marching band. To read press coverage of this event, please visit FVPB's website (www.orangevest.org).

* FVPB GATHERING ON SEPT. 20 in NORTHERN VIRGINIA!

Come out and meet members of FVPB and other Pep Band supporters!!! On Saturday, September 20, 2003, from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., FVPB is hosting a cookout in Falls Church, Virginia. September 20 is an off-week for UVA football, so there's no excuse for not showing up!

The event will be at the home of Bruce Swenson in Falls Church, a five-year member of the Pep Band in the 1980s. Bruce's address is 311 North Lee Street, Falls Church, Virginia. Any Pep Band supporter is invited!  However, if you want to come, you must RSVP to friends@orangevest.org (we need to know how much food to order).

Current members of the Pep Band will be in attendance. This is a great way to show Pep Band members that they have a lot of active, vigorous support. If you are a Pep Band alum, this is also a great opportunity to re-connect with long lost friends. If you are not a Pep Band alum, but you support the Band, this is a great way to meet other intelligent people! Please RSVP to friends@orangevest.org today!!!

* STATUS OF THE PEP BAND

Our beloved Pep Band is off to a terrific start, especially considering the circumstances. They have recruited a first year class of over 20 new members. They have been visible and active around Grounds including (1) roaming performances around the first year dorms on move-in day, (2) performances in the parking lot of Scott Stadium before the Duke game, and (3) a performance at a Virginia Rugby Club match this weekend. At the Duke game, the Pep Band sat in its old section in full uniform but without instruments. Last week, many people -- including a lead editorial in the Cavalier Daily -- noted that the in-game atmosphere suffered without the Pep Band and suggested that the Band be allowed to play during football games this fall. The Athletic Department refused to comment publicly and has said privately that the Pep Band is still prohibited from appearing at any University athletic event (even soccer!) until negotiations are held with UVA's new band director after his arrival.

On August 21, 2003, UVA announced the hiring of William E. Pease to serve as UVA's new band director. Mr. Pease is a Virginia native and graduate of James Madison University who currently directs the marching band at Western Michigan University. Mr. Pease is committed to WMU through the football season but is expected to have a new UVA basketball band ready sometime in November.

Scott Hayes (the Pep Band's current director) has been told that Mr. Pease will visit UVA in late September. At this time, there may be a meeting between the Pep Band leadership, Mr. Pease, and Craig Littlepage (UVA's Athletic Director) to determine whether the Pep Band can play at non-revenue sports.

Regardless of what happens, the Pep Band will be traveling to New York City to perform with the Columbia University Marching Band (Columbia's scramble band) at the Columbia-Harvard football game on November 9, 2003. The Pep Band's transportation to New York is being paid for by Friends of the Virginia Pep Band (thanks to donations from our supporters!).

* FVPB MEETING WITH UVA'S RECTOR

On August 7, 2003, representatives of Friends of the Virginia Pep Band met with Gordon Rainey, the Rector of UVA's Board of Visitors. The purposes of the meeting were to introduce FVPB, to share our position regarding the Pep Band, and to seek advice regarding how we might proceed to seek the restoration of performance privileges for the Pep Band.

Mr. Rainey was gracious, generous with his time, and listened to FVPB's position. We provided a list of our members for Mr. Rainey to review, explained that the Pep Band retains substantial support within the UVA community, and informed him that FVPB is seeking a reasonable compromise that preserves the Pep Band tradition at UVA. Mr. Rainey gave us advice about the persons within UVA's administration who should be contacted. Mr. Rainey confirmed UVA's prior statements that the formation of a marching band is not intended as an assessment of the Pep Band, which can remain a student organization at UVA. Mr. Rainey indicated that the future of the Pep Band is probably not an issue for the Board of Visitors and that we need to work through the UVA administration, particularly AD Craig Littlepage.

* FVPB FUNDRAISING READY TO KICK INTO HIGH GEAR

Although FVPB has received donations from several individuals, our funding is currently insufficient to support the Band's operations this year. In short, we need more money!!!

Your donations will be used prudently and wisely to support the Band's performance activities. All donations will be used for Pep Band necessities -- travel to events, repair and replacement of instruments and uniforms, and new music. (We have a strict procedure in place to ensure that FVPB money is never spent on beer!) The Pep Band currently has a pressing need for drum equipment that we cannot meet. Please consider a donation to FVPB! Instructions about how to donate are available on our website (www.orangevest.org).

FVPB has structured itself as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. We are currently preparing our application to the IRS for tax exempt status, which we expect to submit by mid-September. If our application is approved, all donations made after May 22, 2003, should be deductible. If you make a donation, we will update you when we receive a response from the IRS.

* FUTURE FVPB EVENTS

FVPB will be sponsoring a gathering in Charlottesville either before or after the Homecoming game on Saturday, October 25, 2003. Details to follow, but mark your calendars now!!!

For our New York area supporters, FVPB will be sponsoring a gathering after the Pep Band's appearance at the Columbia-Harvard game on November 9, 2003. We are trying to coordinate this event with the UVA Club in New York City. Again, more details will follow.

* CHECK FVPB's WEBSITE FOR PEP BAND NEWS!

For the latest on the Pep Band's situation, press coverage, and FVPB's efforts to support the Band, be sure to check our website at www.orangevest.org.

Thanks for your support! Together we can keep the scramble band tradition alive at UVA!!!

--David Black
President, FVPB
president@orangevest.org
"Because a scramble band is a terrible thing to waste."

 

 

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