Instrumental Music Parents Club
September 21, 2015 at 7:30 P.M.
Annette Burke, Christopher Norris, Jen Minarcik, Annette DeRosa, Gretchen Morris, Anne Kohart, Dan Pizzi, Mike McDevitt, Chanell McDevitt, Christine Holmbeck, Edward Kirn, Susan Burns, Allison Marchant, Lucille Shenot, Jim Elder, Sandy Elder, Tricia Thomas
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order at 7:35 P.M. by G. Morris. Everyone in the room at that time introduced themselves. The minutes of the 6/2/15 meeting were reviewed and accepted without change.
A. Burke reported that the field trip for seniors in orchestra would be in November; they will be attending a Philadelphia Orchestra Concert at the Kimmel Center. If there is a senior who needs financial assistance to go on the trip, she may look to the IMPC for help with that (approximately $30). She noted that she is not aware as yet whether any student needs assistance, but typically there is at least one student.
A. Burke stated that information regarding try-outs for the All South Jersey Orchestra would be available in October.
A. Burke reported that there are approximately 89 students in the orchestra at the high school, but noted some concern that the 7th grade orchestra is rather small in number. (A. Burke is the orchestra teacher at both the high school and William Allen Middle School.)
She explained that an orchestra ensemble plays at the Senior Honors Night (near the end of the school year), and that she may request the IMPC subsidize the cost of a meal for the ensemble participants – probably pizza. The IMPC officers agreed to funding the meal.
C. Norris reported that the pep band had pre-season rehearsals, and had played at two football games thus far. He stated his appreciation for the IMPC funding of a rehearsal luncheon, and snacks for the pep band during the football game (water and soft pretzels), as well as transport of the gas-powered generator (which powers the band's electric equipment). J. Minarcik added that the IMPC continues to seek multiple volunteers to take the pretzels, water and generator to the football games, and that the IMPC is using Sign-Up Genius for this purpose.
C. Norris stated that the band will play for the Halloween Parades at Roberts and South Valley Elementary Schools on October 30th, and then will play at the Pep Rally on that day, in the evening. The pep band will play at the football game on October 31st, and an invitation has been extended to the 8th graders in the middle school band to join the pep band for that game.
He said that the band will play in the Holiday Parade on December 5th, if the parade is not rained out (which has happened over the past two years). It was noted that the IMPC provides a bagel breakfast for the band prior to the Holiday Parade. In addition, he stated that actual try-outs for All South Jersey Band will be in December. He said that dates for the Western Burlington County Honors Band, however, are not set yet, but will be in the second semester of the school year.
A. Kohart reported that the IMPC has a current balance of $5,600, and that of that, nearly $1,300 was from membership. She reported that Robin Crowl (Membership) had indicated she would be forwarding another $700 for deposit. It was reported that R. Crowl would be in the orchestra/band room during some of the periods at Back to School Night (October 1) to discuss the IMPC, and that membership forms would be available in the classroom that evening.
General Discussion – IMPC Purpose, Fundraising, Expenses
The IMPC has a website. It can be accessed via the high school's Support Organization section of the MTPS.com website. The website has the schedule for concerts, the Pep Band schedule, officer names and contact information, etc.
There was discussion about the current items that the IMPC supports, and its current fundraising opportunities. The IMPC routinely arranges for refreshments following concerts, covers the costs of feeding the Pep Band at several functions, funds several scholarships, covers the costs of and arranges for senior plaques, and sheet cakes for the final concerts. The IMPC also supports the purchase of instruments, repairs, and music, and covers or defrays the costs of other items (such as instrument storage cabinets, some field trip transportation costs), as requested, if such costs are not otherwise covered in full by the school. The IMPC helped cover the purchase of one (baby grand) piano within the prior 10 years, and has a goal of purchasing (in whole or in part) another (upright) piano within the next five years.
The concerts are scheduled thus:
With the exception of the senior sheet cakes, the receptions following concerts are supported by parent food contributions (the IMPC covers the costs of paper products). Donations recently have been handled through Sign-Up Genius, with requests going out a couple weeks prior to the specific concerts.
Currently, substantial funding comes through membership fees, following the change in the membership fee structure a year ago. In addition, raffle baskets are offered at the Winter and Spring concerts, but not at the Pops concerts. (The Pops concerts are the evenings when the band and orchestra recognize their graduating seniors with plaques and/or awards, which increases the length of the evening.) There are typically 2 to 4 raffle baskets (more at the combined Winter concert, fewer at each of the Spring concerts), but the number is flexible. The IMPC has received donations from various sources, and has used Sign-Up Genius to solicit some donations. The IMPC has tried other fundraising options over the years, most with generally less success.
The question arose as to whether the IMPC could try a fundraiser similar to the old Cafe Night, which seemed to be a more substantial fundraiser. It was agreed that, if pursued, all would like something that was less labor intensive for the teachers, with perhaps the students being more responsible in choosing what music to play, similar to the program sponsored by the Recreation Department in April.
The question arose as to whether the IMPC has ever tried a parent social, which several of the sports programs use as a fundraiser. It was suggested that a parent social could be held at the Moorestown Field Club or the Riverton Country Club (as there would be someone willing to sponsor an event at either location). It was noted that the parent socials often include a 50/50 raffle, sold upon entry to the event.
There was a suggestion to expand outreach for concerts. One suggestion was to provide information about the dates and times of the concerts and any other events of interest to the senior residences in the local area, as well as the churches located in Moorestown. It was noted that Mr. Harr maintains list of various community groups in order to advertise the school plays.
C. Norris stated that the music teachers would like to install a newer sound system in the large rehearsal room (the sound system in the smaller rehearsal room was upgraded about 9 years ago). Klipsch speakers have been purchased, and Arsenal Sound provided a very reasonable quote for additional equipment and installation. C. Norris said that the teachers are requesting that the IMPC fund up to $2,000 of the cost, explaining that they teachers were willing to push back the purchase of the upright piano as necessary in order to fund the upgrade to the sound system. After further discussion, those in attendance at the IMPC meeting agreed to allocate $2,000 towards the sound system.
A. Burke provided an update regarding the request for chairs and music stands, reporting that the music program requested and had now received 24 additional chairs and music stands, bringing the total complement to 98 of each, satisfying the current need. She noted, however, that the issues with the heating and ventilation system for the large rehearsal room raised with the administration last year have not been resolved as yet. She stated that someone has been looking into it, but does not know what plans, if any, are being considered.
It was agreed that the next meeting would be held on October 26 at 7:30. Among other things, the IMPC would discuss the raffle baskets, and whether to pursue a parent social or some other fundraising endeavor.
The meeting closed at 8:50 P.M.