Music programs are an amazing way for kids to learn so many skills that will help them throughout their life. For kids who don’t have much of a desire to play sports music programs often offer an excellent alternative. It gives them a chance to be part of a group and a sense of belonging.
Unfortunately, music and art programs are often the first to take a hit when it comes to budget cuts. They are sometimes viewed as ‘non-essential’. Many music programs have only been able to stay afloat because of the support of the community and parents.
Even though some of these amazing people may not know it, they have a special name to go by and that is Band Booster. If you have been told you are a band booster and you are wondering what on earth does that mean, keep reading and all your questions will be answered!
What is a Band Booster?
A Band booster is a parent or guardian of a student in a band program. When your student joins the band, you become a booster. Members are encouraged to volunteer and support in any way they can. Volunteer opportunities vary from school to school but can include chaperons, moving equipment, band camp, and more.
So if you have a student in a middle school, high school, or college band whether you are aware of it or not that makes you a booster.
Some schools have will have a more formal booster club and some will not. Middle schools generally have more informal band booster programs as high schools tend to ask more of their booster members.
Most schools will encourage parents to be active booster members meaning they will give you plenty of opportunities to help out.
Many Booster members are encouraged to buy a band T-shirt, or hoodies with their band’s yearly theme and sometimes band members’ manes printed on them.
It’s a lot of fun to wear your band shirt when volunteering at events or attending football games, performances, or other competitions to show your support for the band.
The money collected from shirt sales often goes into the band account to help with other needs that the band has.
What is a Band Booster Club?
A Band booster club is a non-profit organization generally run by parents or band alumni for the purpose of raising funds to keep the music program running smoothly. These are volunteers or fee-based members that give their time and support to all aspects of the band program. They are often in charge of fundraising.
The Band booster club can support any or all band programs at the school that they support. For example, a band booster program might just be supporting the Marching Band & Color Guard or it might be supporting the Marching Band, Color Guard, Winter Guard, Symphonic Band, Jazz Band, Pep Band, Winter Percussion, and Small ensembles.
Generally, a Band Booster Program will support all band programs offered at the school.
These clubs generally meet once a month and must be approved by the school board which will require them to abide by certain by-laws.
The club is run by board members which are generally voted in by other members of the group. The board member positions may vary depending on the school but often include these positions/officers.
- Band Booster President – This person is the head of the organization they have the most responsibilities when it comes to keeping the club running smoothly. Normally this person has a year or two of experience in the other lower positions before taking on the role of the president.
- Presides over meetings
- Looks after the general welfare of the booster program and its members
- Communicates with the director and other student band leaders
- Communicates information back to the booster members from the director(s)
- Will be a tie-breaker vote when booster members are at a standstill over any issues
- Band Booster Vice President – Second in command their role is similar to the president.
- Takes on the role of the Band Booster President when they are not able to be at meetings or events
- Supports the President in all aspects of running the Band Booster organization
- Performs tasks assigned to them by the President or Band director
- Band Booster Secretary – This position can be summed up in 2 words… keeps records! Basically, anything that needs to be kept track of that’s the secretary’s job.
- Takes records and notes of the meetings
- Keeps records of activities and makes sure the organization is following the by-laws
- Keeps records of the members and any dues that need to be paid
- Send out communication about meetings and activities
- If the president or vice president is absent they would be in charge
- Treasurer– This is the finance person of the group. With the amount of fundraising and financials that a booster club takes care of this person has their work cut out for them.
- They keep track of the boosters checking
- Making payments when necessary
- Collect money when needed
- They track and submit records to all other members of the organization
- Give a report at meetings on the status of the funds when asked
- Historian – The person that gets to help the band and boosters make history! They get the fun task of keeping accounts of all the activities the band members have been doing all year. Not all Band Booster clubs have a historian.
- Takes pictures and videos of the band performances or practices
- Take pictures and videos of the booster member events and/or fundraisers.
- Committees – These are formed from the general members when the need arises for certain events that need to be planned and executed.
WHAT DOES A BAND BOOSTER DO?
Besides all the positions that were listed above a band booster helps support the band wherever and whenever possible. Some band booster clubs ask boosters to pay a fee every year. That fee goes into the general account to help pay for things that are needed by the band.
Here are some of the ways our band utilizes band boosters. I have personally been able to participate in some of these activities and really enjoy being able to help the band out!
Student Socials: Band Boosters coordinate student socials such as team building events, pool parties, or bowling to help bring students together outside the classroom. They chaperone the socials.
These socials help band members to form friendships and bond making them a stronger team overall.
Volunteer Coordination: Band Boosters and specifically the Booster board members coordinate volunteers for events such as Fall festivals, fall bake sales, pizza lunch servers for daytime band performances, bringing food or snacks for band camp, and more!
Fundraising: This is a big part of the booster club’s responsibilities fundraising is often what keeps the band program afloat. It pays for uniforms, music, instruments, flags, and much more.
Some of the fundraisers that our booster club has organized and done are collecting money for parking for our local university football games, cleaning up after football games, painting parking spaces at the high school, breakfast with Santa, and more.
Top Tip: Check out our ultimate guide to band fundraising ideas!
21 Band/Orchestra/Choir Fundraiser Ideas that WORK! – Top Music Tips
Director Support: Some of the funds that Booster Members raise have been used to send the band directors to conferences, allowing them additional director memberships, and providing additional support for the directors to provide the best band experience for the students!
Instruments: Some boosters use funds to purchase extra instruments to make it easier and less expensive for parents to rent for their students and ensure students have an opportunity to play.
What is a Band Booster Meeting?
A band booster meeting is usually held every month at the same time and place. It is a time when the Booster board members, director, and band leadership come together to discuss upcoming events, the needs of the band, and brainstorm ideas for future fundraisers or events.
All Booster meetings are open to band members and parents and they are encouraged to attend. This is a great place to get updates on the band celebrate their successes and see how you can help to support them.
How Can you Find Your Band Booster Club Info?
Many band booster clubs will have their own website or Facebook group that they use to communicate with their parents and members. A lot of times there will be an e-mail list that you can sign up for. This info will sometimes come home with your student during the first weeks of school or the first day of the band summer program.
You can also contact your school’s main office or the band director to ask about the booster club and how to find information on volunteer opportunities or meeting times.
Our booster club utilizes apps such as remind so that the director and board members can send out blast text messages giving parents updates on important information such as practices and pick-up times.
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