Velvet Knights
As we enter week five of the Drum Corps International Tour, the plot thickens with at least one event per day until Wednesday, Aug. 11 — and then it's time for the DCI World Championship Quarterfinals. This week many West Coast who haven't seen any of the competition in the Midwest and the East will meet up for the first time, making this week a catalyst that could set the tone for the rest of the 2010 summer season. Starting today, July 16 the Dream Invitational, featuring 15 World, Open and All-Age corps, is one of the biggest California shows of the season. Open Class corps will highlight this event which will also include the Cascades, Pacific Crest, Academy, Mandarins and all-age corps SoCal Dream and San Francisco Renegades. Also happening today is River City Rhapsody, La Crosse Edition, a hometown show for the Blue Stars that returns to the DCI Tour schedule after a two-year hiatus.

Santa Clara Vanguard
Tomorrow, July 17, marks the first-ever DCI Premier Event in Minneapolis: DCI Minnesota at TCF Bank Stadium. The current leaders Blue Devils, along with Santa Clara Vanguard, Blue Knights, and Troopers will finally compete alongside the Cadets, Carolina Crown, Bluecoats, Cavaliers, and many more. And if you can't make it, don't worry, all you need is an Internet connection and a subscription to the DCI Fan Network, and you can watch all 23 corps performances during a live webcast of this event. In Mesa, Ariz., fans will see the Academy, Cascades, Mandarins and Pacific Crest on Sunday, July 18 for the Southwest Corps Connection II. The Open Class' Vanguard Cadets and Impulse will also compete at the event. Other Sunday adventures include the Summer Showdown in West Des Moines, Iowa, a home show for Colts, and the classic Show of Shows in Rockford, Ill., featuring the city's local Phantom Regiment. This will be the first time Santa Clara Vanguard has performed in Rockford in 24 years!

DCI Houston stadium
Got a case of the Mondays? If so, Drums Across Kansas is the only cure. The second of two Kansas drum corps events, this will be the first competition of the season for Open Class corps Forte and Music City. On Tuesday, July 20, check out Battle of the Border VII in Van Buren, Ark., to see the Cadets, Santa Clara Vanguard, Colts, Crossmen, Teal Sound, Music City, and Forte. This is the only DCI event in Arkansas this summer, so if you're a local, you won't want to miss it. Also on Tuesday is DCI Central Oklahoma, where top World and Open Class corps will compete. Then on Wednesday, July 21, don't forget about Drums of Summer in Broken Arrow, Okla., the eighth iteration of the event. We'll wrap up the week with the events that really signal the halfway point of the DCI summer season: DCI Houston at the Berry Center in Cypress, Texas, and DCI Dallas at Wildcat-Ram stadium in Dallas. The two events feature nearly all of the top World Class drum corps. The corps performing Thursday, July 22 in Houston will perform the following day in Dallas; likewise, the corps competing Thursday in Dallas will go on to Houston on Friday, July 23. View the complete schedule of 2010 DCI Tour events.