Thursday, March 31, 2005

Spin it

ColtsMarch0030, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Won't be many guard spinning pix from the drill camp, so I thought I'd do one more from March. (Hi, Char, this one's for you)


Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Camp weekend details are posted

Details for the drill camp in Sterling, Ill., are up at (Click on the title of this blog entry to be taken directly there.)

Volunteers are needed! There will be cooking and sewing and other tasks to be done while we're in Sterling.

The full weekend schedule is posted at Go there (by clicking on this post's title, as I said before) for all the details.

Go on now. Shoo.


Letter from Mee Hee

It has been a long time since I have been with my family since I aged
out last summer. I hear about all the new things happening with the
Colts and I can't lie...I am severely jealous and I miss the family so
much. Life does go on after you become an ageout and an alumus of
Drum Corps but it is so hard!! I wanted to thank so many of the support staff
for making my years so memorable.. I remember being a
rookie in 2000 and being much like an absorbent sponge you all use to
wash dishes on the was a whole new world that was opened to
me. Now that I have "asianed" out....I find myself trying very hard
to connect back with my closest friends from my years. After I aged
out I asked myself..What now? Where do I go from here? What am I
going to do this next summer? Well it was a new dilemma to face...

I am happy to tell all of you that I will be getting my B.S. in
Biological Sciences in May from the University of Illinois at Chicago
and plan to pursue my masters in either medical science or biomedical
science within a year or two. Then plan to specialize in blood bank
technology. And most importantly.. I would like to volunteer this
summer.. I'll have to get in touch with Greg and Polly on that
one..but I will try my hardest to be on tour...and this time.. I will
be able to really know what goes on when the members practice and the
cooks "cook."

I am helping with finding a recipient of the sponsorship that I had
last year with my sponsors..we are having an official meeting April
15 to decide criteria and then select a deserving member.. I am very
excited to a part of the selection committee for something that
impacted me so much my age out summer. If you all haven't seen the fanfare column here is the link.
It would mean a lot to me if you would check it's my little
story and how my sponsors became a part of my life. I still cry
reading over those e-mails...YES!! I am still am emotional
basketcase...speaking of that...Did anyone tape the ageout speeches in
Denver after the Colts last rehearsal? I would love to see myself
choke and babble over my tears...what a great memory...I still don't
remember everything I could i? I was a complete wreck but
I had good reason.

I was recently asked to be a part of a div. 1 drum corps staff. I
went to a camp.. and things went alright but the entire time being
there I couldn't stop thinking of the Colts. WOW...we really have it
figured out at the colts..I went to the food line and was shocked!!
were was my blue jello? Where was the kick ass spaghetti? Where was
the good cereal? I settled for coffee and a bagel...I am not certain
what my future is with them.. nothing has been finalized..I am not
sure if I will take the position.. As much as I love to teach and
share what I have learned from my years of heart was
not there at the time...and I'm not sure if it ever will be
there...not after experiencing a great program like ours..There really
is a lot of heart in our corps.. I always knew that..but going to a
different place with an organization that was not as fortunate as
ours...made me really see it. I thank God that we had Cinnamon roll
oatmeal on tour!! =) that was my favorite!!! (still is)

To all the new volunteers!! Every one of you really make a
difference...Everything that you do for the Colts impact every single
person involved with the organization and even outside our immediate
organization. I know several drum corps call us "country club" I
can't disagree completely..we do get our real brand cereal and do get
to have cell phones on tour...and did I mention the 5-star rated
cuisines everyday of tour? yeah...the members to have it good...but
that's only because we have/had the best volunteers with us all the

Mee Hee Kim
Colts Alumni (2000,2003,2004)

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

'Pip' in Euro Championships

'Pip' in Euro Championships, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Heard from Olaf today. Below is his email about seeing 'Pip' at the European indoor percussion contest. Pip's ensemble took 1st Place! Go Colts!

(If any of you Xanga posters are reading this, please put a note in your Xanga or copy this there and let the Colts know who don't visit the old folks blog....Thanks.)



March 20th we had a small Colts reunion in Holland, Carl 'Pip' came to my little country to participate with his corps the 37th Kingswood in a indoor percussion contest held at the same time as the European Winter Guard Finals.

And guess what, they won first place and not in the least of Carl's energetic performance.

During the qualifications (only three best performances were allowed to show up in finals during the evening) there was a small hick-up.

Judges made a 'big' mistake by putting them on 5th place. As recaps showed afterwards they were put on all captions first or second but one by the field judge.

He admitted he made a mistake, he wrote down the wrong points. So instead of being kicked out of finals, they ended up being first.

So they could show us another show at finals night. It turned out that they have been to nervous during the prelims, having all the hassling by jury all tensions fell away.

Their final performance was one full of energy and a lot of showmanship. You should have seen Carl doing his act, challenging the audience while playing his tenor.

I can surely say that Kent would have been proud of his tenor player. Carl just rapt the audience around his 'sticks' playing his heart out, while making his fellow players perform even better. You should have seen him dance like a fully trained dancer.

All in all a great performance, it even quieted the spoiled audience down to absolutely silence.

Even up to a point that the audience even turned against me while I was shouting for them and trying to cheer them as loud as I can.

(OK I now I make a lot of noise, but yeah that is also drumcorps! I have to practice my field voice to cheer in a full stadium.)

The results were this time without mistakes from the jury, they became 1st place with their thrilling, high skilled show.

Afterwards we all had a party downtown to celebrate their victory.

It was great to see Carl and Mark again (his instructor whom visited Colts this Summer as well) I hope to see them during the English drumcorps finals in October.

I hope you will have a great time coming weekend with the Colts. It looks like they have a great training facility.

Having their music book already finished, starting on their show, must be one big thrill to watch the whole process. As I wrote to some of you before I really envy you guys that you can be an active part in the whole picture. Hope to be a small part in it soon, only I might have to wait a whole Summer if my work allows.

But you will never know.

Say high to your wife, kids, Colts, cooks, volunteers.

Till soon

Olaf 'Alf' Nahon

The Loyal Fans

ColtsMarch0019, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Camp in Illinois

I see at that we're traveling to beautiful Sterling, Ill., for drill camp this weekend. That's just one town over from Dixon, Ill., the boyhood home of Ronald Reagan (and the girlhood home of Colts moms Jody and Penny). Anybody else from that area that I don't know about?

I know that the Sterling-Dixon area has been a hotbed of drum corps interest since WAY back -- back when Greg Orwoll was marching even. (I'll probably pay for that comment...) Pre-DCI there was a drum and bugle corps competition at the Dixon Petunia Festival every July 4th.

Haven't been to the Westwood facility in Sterling myself but Jody's mom told her last night that it's "some place." Should be interesting. I haven't heard a lot of details for the weekend (any more than you can get by going to but there's supposed to be more info on the website today.

I'm sure there'll be plenty for volunteers to do........


In formation

ColtsMarch0028, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Pit practice

ColtsMarch0033, originally uploaded by David Speer.

One thing that the cooks almost always know is what the pit, uh-h front ensemble, is working on......


Thursday, March 24, 2005

Purple flags

DLS001000_RT8, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Looks like there are going to be purple flags again this year. I love purple flags....


Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Which place was that?

ColtsMarch0017, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Colts volunteer vets played a rousing game of "Were you there the time when...?" on Saturday night of March camp.


Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Uniform duty

ColtsMarch0021, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Everybody's getting ready for a new season.


Monday, March 21, 2005

What was that again?

ColtsMarch0003, originally uploaded by David Speer.

This is from Friday night's jazzy viz rehearsal. I don't think some of the Colts could believe what they were seeing.

Heard from Bill and Rod over the weekend. Is there anybody else out there? Easter weekend and then another camp. Yay!


Friday, March 18, 2005

Bari blast

ColtsMarch0042, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Sounds like a Kool-Aid flavor, doesn't it?


Thursday, March 17, 2005

It's a stretch

ColtsMarch0008, originally uploaded by David Speer.

I know, I know. Enough with the words. Let's see some pictures! Remember to go to and look in the media area for the best March camp photos.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Black Pants

Click on the "Black Pants" title above and you'll see a picture of how the new black pants look on one of this year's Colts. While you are at, look around for about 20 pictures from March camp that were posted today .

(Thanks, Katherine!)

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Weekend eats

Colts March Camp Menu

Friday snack
Corn dogs
Peanut butter and jelly

Saturday breakfast
Sausage patties
Peanut butter and jelly

Saturday lunch
Chicken sandwich
Baked beans
Jell-O with fruit
Peanut butter and jelly

Saturday dinner
Salisbury Steak
Mashed potatoes
Peas and carrots
Yellow cake
Peanut butter and jelly

Saturday snack
Pretzels and cheese
Peanut butter and jelly

Sunday breakfast
Breakfast burritos
Hash browns
Peanut butter and jelly

Sunday lunch
Ravioli (with some kind of great Barry sauce)
Bread sticks
Pudding parfaits
Peanut butter and jelly

Monday, March 14, 2005

Words from Camp:

Dusty. Super busy. Funny.
Tiring. Suprising. Goose-bumping.

Last things first. Sunday afternoon's concert was spine-tingling. The corps played all the music from this year's show -- in March! The closer is amazing. The time changes. the emotional highs. And just the power of the sound coming out of those kids. Wow. And the color guard. It was a beautiful, challenging performance -- in March! I know the guard is bruised and battered after the workout they got. But that performance was worth it.

Thank yous go out to the whole crew that replaced all the ceiling tiles at the corps hall on Friday night and Saturday. By lunchtime Saturday, there was no way those guys were going to be finished before sometime Sunday. But they were done by dinner Saturday night. And all the tables and chairs and the floor in the bingo hall vacuumed and wiped down, too. Gee, that ceiling was supposed to be white all along.... Can't name the whole crew 'cause I didn't take notes and I'd leave someone out, but a big thanks to all of you and especially Jim Hauser for coordinating the whole thing and spending the whole day on a ladder tearing down and putting up tiles. Can you raise your arms over your head today, Jim?

Thanks to Barry for being a great head cook. Overheard at breakfast Saturday morning: "Barry even makes pancakes taste better." Thanks to Jim J. for helping out too. Jim seldom gets to make drink anymore since he's trained so many other people to do it. I now have the reputation as "Drink Master" but Jim trained me and I'm just passing along what I learned. Thanks to all the cooks. I thnk my favorite from the weekand was the cake at Saturday night dinner. Or Sunday's breakfast burritos. Or...I'll just have to post the whole menu when I get a chance.

Thanks to the flag sewing crew. And the uniform fitting crew. And the trash carrying out crew. I know there were a couple of trips out to the cook trailer to see what was there and what was not and what needs to be done before tour. I'm sure improvements are in the works.

There's just so much. If I missed something you did, I'm sorry I can't remember all the specifics. Just know the Colts appreciate all the great help and send a big thanks to everyone.

Lots of old friends showed up to say hi over the weekend. Some of the regular volunteers were missing for various reasons (I heard the Bill S. missed his first camp since Dec. 2001. Is that right? Gee, he deserved a weekend off.) For everyone who had to miss, hurry back! We really, really missed you.

But the good news is that we had LOTS of great new help. And I wanted to say a special thanks to those new volunteers. There's a lot to learn and not a long time for teaching. Thanks for hanging with us. And making suggestins and finding new ways to do things.

Oh yeah. Almost forgot. BLACK PANTS! We saw Colts in brand new BLACK uniform pants this weekend. You maybe could see a picture of a marching memeber in black pants here in the next few days. Check back.

If you have anything to add about the weekend, please click below and leave a comment.


Friday, March 11, 2005

It's camp day!

March is shaping up as a pretty awesome camp, from what I've heard. Some of you may be surprised by which volunteers are at camp and which ones are not. I won't spoil it; you'll have to show up to find out.

The update at says to bring old clothes to work at the Colts Center this weekend. They're tearing out the ceiling. And bring sewing machines for flag sewing and the start of uniform fitting. Summer is coming fast......

We're having a busy band weekend at home, so Jody and Aaron won't get there until Sunday morning. Sebastian is coming to Des Moines to pick me up Friday afternoon, so we'll be there all weekend. My sweet Jody is the best. She said, "You go. You want to see all of them so much," and volunteered to stay home and coordinate dogs and band competitions and boys coming home for spring break and then drive to Dubuque at 5 in the morning on Sunday. Whatta woman.

I'm sure all of you have similar stories of juggling home and corps. I just figure, you do it 'cause you love it. And the kids.

The revisions on the Colts Volunteer Handbook for 2005 are all in. (Yes! I did make it by March camp!) Vicki will have some printed copies at camp. But you can have your own if you go to and click on the link at the right side of the page under Quick Links that says Colts Volunteer Handbook. That will download a pdf file to your computer. Print your own copy and bring it along.

And I have to acknowledge the hard work put in by Dan Knopoff on the original edition of the handbook last year and the revisions and suggestions made by Polly, my Jody, Jody Glow, and Marlin on this year's update. I'm truly standing on the shoulders of giants. (In the case of Dan, literally)


Thursday, March 10, 2005

Horn line

CRW_0113, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Mello shadow

CRW_0124, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005


CRW_0039, originally uploaded by David Speer.


CRW_0039, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Monday, March 07, 2005


DLS000505_RT8, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Always teaching.....

Friday, March 04, 2005

Arrangement in Grey and Black

DLS000503_RT8, originally uploaded by David Speer.

You're never alone if you have your cel phone.


Thursday, March 03, 2005


DLS000497_RT8, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Drums Along Dubuque

CRW_0120, originally uploaded by David Speer.

Not exactly the Rockies in the background, but it was good to see the Colts tenor line outside. Way to go, Kent.


Tuesday, March 01, 2005

A cook's view of drum corps

CRW_0064, originally uploaded by David Speer.