Members of the Friends of DCI program share their commitment with future generations of outstanding young performers.

There's nothing quite like the exhilaration of thunderous applause, rewarding teams of 135 sweat-soaked performers on a humidity-infused August night. Those world-class musicians have performed their hearts out tonight, keeping nothing for themselves. They smile with the knowledge that they're experiencing something truly special and something enjoyed by only a precious few.
For those future generations of young performers, a support network of more than 350 people, known as the Friends of DCI, currently help to guarantee future opportunities for those students to achieve their ultimate performances. And those Friends of DCI members are there to enjoy every heart-pounding minute of the action from the best seats in the house. Founded in 1981, the Friends of DCI program started with a small, dedicated group of about 30 charter members – many who are still enthusiastically supporting the drum corps activity today. More than 180 of the current Friends members have been contributing annually for more than a decade. "The Friends of DCI program is a great way to support drum corps," said Terry Buck, a Friends of DCI member since 1989. "The drum corps activity has been so good to all of us and to thousands of young people. It gets you in touch with the core of the activity as well as the behind-the-scenes operation. You get to meet and socialize with a lot of the people that have the same interests as you do. It's a great feeling of camaraderie." Membership in the prestigious Friends of DCI program provides exclusive, partners-only benefits, such as complimentary premium seating at select DCI-produced events, special access to drum corps media, VIP event access and more. In addition, Friends have the benefit of belonging to an exclusive "inner circle" of our most committed fans who wish to encourage -- and enjoy – "Achievement at a Higher Level," today and long into the future. "It really makes you feel like you are a part of it. Before we joined we didn't have a connection point. We just sent our money to an address, got tickets in the mail, showed up at the stadium and there you were," Buck remembered. "Being a part of the Friends of DCI gives you a place to gather and meet other Friends. You are no longer just someone who is passing through — you're a part of it."

Being in a drum corps is all about being on a team and many Friends of DCI members realize that they can do more for the activity together than they can as individuals. Being a part of the organization not only makes a difference but it makes you feel included. "It makes you feel good that you've done something for the kids and the corps, and that's important. I want to make sure drum corps survives!" said Friends of DCI member Wayne Karge. Wayne and his wife Karin were charter members of the Friends of DCI program in 1981 and have volunteered for drum corps organizations on many different levels. They both were involved with a drum corps in their youth, and after taking so much away from the experience, participating in the Friends program is one way they have been able to give back. "We met two of our best friends in the world through the Friends program. We were sitting by each other in 1981 in Montr?©al and ever since then we only see each other once a year, but that alone is worth the price of joining the Friends of DCI," Karge said. "Getting to know these people and having fun with them adds more to the involvement of going to the shows." Contributions from the Friends of DCI help to ensure that corps have what they need to make it down the road every summer including the cost of food, gas and supplies. "We couldn't do it without the help of the Friends of DCI. With their help and support, more than a quarter million dollars is given back to help fund the drum corps as they travel thousands of miles across the nation during their eight week tour," said Friends of DCI Coordinator, Missy Berg. Through their contributions, Friends of DCI members also have recently helped to establish the Friends of DCI Scholarship Foundation which will annually help support two marching drum corps members with the cost of tuition and books. "The amount of generous support we receive every year is amazing," Berg said. "Friends of DCI members know what the drum corps activity is truly about and they support it for the right reasons." As Partners in the Pursuit of Excellence, your generous assistance will help extraordinary young performers to celebrate achievement at a higher level for years to come. Please give a Gift of Excellence by joining our exclusive circle of Friends today. Find more information about Friends of DCI membership benefits and join today using our secure Web site. Questions? Contact the Friends of DCI coordinator at