Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

May 11, 2012

Orange Express looking to future

TAHLEQUAH —  

When the Tahlequah High School Orange Express Marching Band takes the field next football season, members will be sporting new uniforms for the first time in over a decade.
Until then, band directors, boosters parents and students are furiously raising funds to cover the expense.
“It’s been over 10 years since we’ve had new uniforms,” said Band Director Josh Allen. “They’re supposed to be replaced every 10, but I think these are 12 years old. To outfit the band will cost anywhere from $20,000 to $30,000.”
Those familiar with the uniforms know all too well the weight of the thick, black outfits, as well as the dry-cleaning expense involved in maintaining them.
“The new uniforms are about half the weight of the old ones, and they’re machine washable,” said Allen.
Allen said the THS band room is equipped with a washer and dryer, which will cut cleaning expenses for students. 
The students will be responsible for purchasing uniform pants and shoes, and the balance will be paid for through fundraising.
“We’re trying to get the purchase expedited, because there’s about a five-month turnaround time,” said Allen. “We want to be sure and have them in time for marching season next year.”
According to Allen, the band parents and boosters have managed to save a little money this year, despite making the trip to San Diego in December.
“Our goal is to pay for the uniforms, and still have money for next year,” said Allen.
While this school year is almost over, both the Orange Ex-press and the Tahlequah Middle School bands are prepping for the final concert of the year, as well as the band banquet and a spring fundraiser.
The instrumental concert is slated for Tuesday, May 15, in the THS Performing Arts Center. Band coronation begins at 6:30 p.m., and the concert follows shortly thereafter. 

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