After years of competing on the field, the Santa Clara Vanguard and the Blue Devils have joined forces to form a consortium to produce a two shows this weekend that are going to be "fantastic," according to representatives from both organizations."It's a win-win situation, and it's working out really great for us," said John Flores, who together with his wife, Gloria, has been running the Santa Clara Vanguard's Pacific Procession event for years along with several other "great" volunteers.Blue Devils corps director David Gibbs is also excited about the two shows this weekend. "It's been a long time coming. We're very excited that the Blue Devils and the Vanguard can work together to benefit the drum corps community. We're excited that the consortium is happening this year," Gibbs said.On Saturday, 12 corps will compete in Hayward, Calif., at Hayward StateUniversity. The next day, the same 12 corps will travel a short journey of approximately 40 miles to compete in Pleasant Hill, Calif., at Diablo Valley College. The shows are being billed as "The Weekend of Champions.""I'm looking forward to seeing the new way that the show is going to beconducted. The goal is always to prepare the best show for the fans toenjoy," said Gloria Flores."We've been talking about the consortium for a number of years. We decided this year, after a couple meetings (with the Blue Devils), to try it," John Flores said. Flores, who has been involved in drum corps promotion since 1978, closely followed the success of the newly formed Southern California consortium. The Pacific Crest, Esperanza, Yamato and Riverside Community College collaborated on four drum corps events for the first time in 2001 and enjoyed tremendous success. Rather than compete for the best date and the best stadium, the organizations serve the fans and the participating corps even better with a cooperative effort. All share in the challenges of operating a show, and more importantly, the successes.
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