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Olympia New Horizons Band

treble clef Band Camp 2003 treble clef
2003 Olympia Band Camp Participants


"Music must rank as the highest of fine arts -
as the one which, more than any other, ministers to human welfare."

Herbert Spencer (On the Origin and Function of Music)

July 8 through 12, 2003 - what a week it was! The impetus for hosting this event occurred fifteen months ago, when seven members of the ONHB attended the Cambria Pines Music Institute sponsored by the Santa Barbara, CA Prime Time Band. It was such an exhilarating, memorable experience that the idea of our band organizing a similar event was born.

After much discussion, research, and brain-storming in the following few months, it was decided we would, indeed, embark on this adventure. So on July 10, 2002, all ONH Band members were invited to attend our first organizational meeting. Thirteen people were able to become a part of the on-going Planning Committee. Carolyn Hendricks agreed to accept the role of Event Manager.

After a year of planning, preparing, and much anticipating, the day we'd all been working toward finally dawned. The Washington Land Yacht Harbor Facility was decorated with fresh, Northwest wildflowers, brightly colored musical notes, and various music-related quotes which had been printed on large banners. Tables were set for breakfast; chairs were in place for the band. Everything was in readiness to greet our guests. It was cool and overcast at 7:30 am (though that soon gave way to warm sunshine as befits a Washington day in July) as people began arriving from all over the United States. Soon, seventy-three musicians (including our four Directors) and eleven spouses/guests had been welcomed and registered. After enjoying a Continental Breakfast, picking up informational material, name-tags, and their Band Camp T-shirts, everyone was ready to start making music.

Eagerness to begin playing resulted in practice actually starting half an hour earlier than scheduled. This prompted Dr. Roy Ernst to remark that he d been around and seen a lot, but it was a FIRST in his experience to have musicians not only present but ready to play EARLY. (Dr. Ernst, as most all NH band members know, is the man we are all indebted to for creating this remarkable New Horizon program some twelve years ago.)

We were fortunate to have the following four outstanding Directors working - and playing - with us: Host Vic Jowders of Olympia, Washington, Sherry Cossey of Eugene, Oregon, Roy Ernst of Rochester, New York, and Ron Phillips of Carefree, Arizona.

Vic Jowders received his Music degree from Washington State College (Pullman) in 1958, and his public school teaching credentials the following year. He spent his career in the public schools of Washington from 1959 until 1995. He taught both instrumental and vocal, kindergarten through 12th grade, and spent many years conducting church choral groups as well.

During his retirement he has worked with both the Tacoma and Olympia New Horizons groups. He has participated in New Horizons Band Institutes in New York, Palm Springs and Hawaii.

Roy Ernst is a professor emeritus of the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester in New York, where he taught for 25 years and chaired the music education department for 12 years.

In 1991, Dr. Ernst started the first New Horizons Band at Eastman for the purpose of creating a model program emphasizing entry and re-entry points for music-making for senior adults. Later, he became the founding director of the New Horizons Music Project, funded by the National Association of Music Merchants and the National Association of Band Instrument Manufacturers. In that capacity, he used the New Horizons Band as a model to assist in starting more than 60 similar programs in the United States and Canada.

Ernst began his career in Michigan, where he taught instrumental music in elementary and secondary schools. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees from Wayne State University and a Doctorate from The University of Michigan.

Sherry Cossey grew up in Lakeview, Oregon. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a B.A. in Music in the Honors College in 1961, and a M.A. in Music Education about four years later.

She taught at Kennedy Junior High in Eugene, Oregon from 1966 until her retirement in 1998. Her classes included all bands, general music, choir, and orchestra. (Along the way she produced fifteen Broadway musicals with her students.) Sherry was principal clarinetist with the Eugene Symphony from l966 to 1986. She also played with the Eugene Symphonic Band. After retiring she became Band Manager for the ESB and co-director of the Eugene New Horizons Band.

Mr. Phillips received his B.M. and M.M. degrees from Michigan State University, where he was principal trumpet in the band and orchestra. He has completed all of the required course work and recital for his Ed.D. degree at Arizona State University.

Mr. Phillips has just completed 45 years of teaching music in the public and private schools in Michigan and Arizona (12 in Michigan, 33 in Arizona.) He recently retired from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix after serving 25 years as Director of Instrumental Ensembles and 5 years as Music Department Chairman.

Mr. Phillips is currently the musical director of the Desert Foothills New Horizon Band in Carefree/Cave Creek, Arizona. He is also an active teacher of Elderhostel Classes through Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona.

Each conductor brought four or five pieces of rehearsal music. They also brought an enormous amount of positive energy, expertise, and just plain fun to the proceedings. Several times one of them would call out Five Dollars to whoever was then directing. (That usually came after going over a difficult passage several times and the current conductor announcing that now we were going to play it straight through without stopping.) Amid much laughter from the band and the directors, a five-dollar bet was apparently then on the line!

The Schedule of Activities for each weekday included a morning rehearsal as well as several afternoon and evening rehearsals. Continental Breakfasts were served each morning. Four lunches, and three dinners were also provided during the week. Two special evening social events included an Ice Cream Social on Tuesday evening, and a Pizza Party and Sing-a-long on Thursday evening. (Many thanks to Tom Burch, from the Tacoma NHB, who energetically - and expertly - played the piano all evening for the equally energetic singers.) Saturday morning followed the weekly schedule of morning breakfast and rehearsal until noon. It was then free time for sightseeing or relaxing until dinner was served at 5pm. (Many people gave glowing reports on how much they d enjoyed their excursions to places such as Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helens, the Nisqually Delta, the Tacoma Glass Museum, Olympia's Farmer's Market, and Puget Sound.) The culmination of the week s activities and our Grand Finale was a public Evening Concert and farewell social hour.

Approximately 200 people attended the concert and seemed to enjoy the nine selections performed by the band, as much as the musicians enjoyed playing them. Dr. Ernst explained to the audience that ten additional pieces had been worked on during the week - enough for another whole concert! Though that would have to be another time. (This program was handed out at the concert on Saturday evening. We had set up 50 chairs, but when people kept coming in the door we continued to add chairs until approximately 200 people had finally entered! The concert was held up until all guests were seated.)

All in all, everyone seemed to agree it had been a grand week replete with so much of what fills the soul with happiness, and makes life such a fine adventure. Good music built the foundation, good people filled the house, good food pleased the palate. The sun was shining; the mood was bright. For a week in July, the troubles of the world seemed to recede a little, and we basked in a near perfect bubble in time. The worst glitch (more of a glitchette, maybe) of the week occurred when a water fountain malfunctioned and flooded the floor before it was discovered and turned off. It took considerable time to clean up. However, we decided to look at the incident as simply a small demonstration that in this unique week our cup did, indeed, runneth over.

We were fortunate in so many ways as we put this event together. It all started with Carolyn and Jerry Hendricks' vision formed in Cambria, and implemented in their skilled, dedicated work during the past year. Many others played a large part in the actual process. Vic's expert knowledge, guidance, and encouragement; our wonderful guest directors; the Planning Committee's perseverance; the permission to use the Washington Land Yacht Harbor's fine facilities (several people commented the acoustics here were better than any place they had played before); the meals presented by the excellent professional caterer, Vicki Parrish, and her volunteer staff; the sponsorship by members of the National Association of Music Merchants and by our local sponsor, Music Centers, Inc; and even the warmly smiling weather gods, all contributed greatly to the week's success. That success was also due, in the final analysis, to the spirit of dozens of congenial, music-loving new friends who came to Olympia to create and share in the essence of the occasion - which was the pure pleasure of playing music together.

Participants were invited to share their comments on a bulletin board throughout the week. We appreciated their input and valued their suggestions. They were also interested in the display of a United States map with the location of all current New Horizons Bands highlighted. It showed that twenty-eight states and three Canadian Provinces are now home to one or more New Horizon Band.

Comments from Participants

  • Great Band Directors
  • What a wonderful selection of music!
  • Thanks for putting the directional arrows at the BC entrance.
  • What a great week of music and learning!
  • Not enough time to go to hotels between rehearsal - shorten or lengthen??
  • Loved the Italian bistro tablecloths to go with the lasagna. You think of everything!
  • We really like having salads a lot and the light desserts.
  • Thank you, directors, for the"lessons" in musicology.
  • Awesome arrangements! Good facility, too!
  • The best organized Band Camp I've ever seen. We will attempt to emulate this next year in Cambrian Pines.
  • You meet the nicest people at Band Camp!!

"I see my life in terms of music."
Albert Einstein

We were pleased that an Associated Press reporter came to cover the week-long event. She conducted several interviews with various band members and also talked with Dr. Ernst. Her article appeared in the Olympian on July 12. A reporter from the Tacoma News Tribune also visited the band camp. Her article, along with a picture of several of the musicians, was featured in the TNT on July 13, 2003. We hope these articles will help inform and inspire more people to explore the wonderful opportunities inherent in the New Horizons Band program.

As the week ended, many people spoke of feeling a certain sadness that it had flown by so quickly. Don Oliver, a trumpet player from Oregon, happened to share this quote that he d recently come across which put it all into perspective

"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened."

Certainly we of the Olympia New Horizons Band will be smiling for a long time remembering that Band Camp 2003 happened.

Photos from Band Camp 2003

To enlarge, click on picture, then "Back" to return to this page.

Hall entrance
Hall Entrance
band rehearsal
Band Rehearsal
Lunch service
Serving lunch
Party time
Party Time
Serving Pizza
Recognizing Organizers
Band Board
Band Board

Banner Quotes

"Such sweet compulsion doth in music lie."
John Milton

"Music that gentler on the spirit lies,
Than tir'd eyelids upon tir'd eyes."

Alfred Lord Tennyson

"Musick is the thing of the world that I love most." (7-30-1666)
Samuel Pepys

"Music is the universal language of mankind."
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"Your best is good enough."
Dr. Roy Ernst

"Music is your own experience, your thoughts, your wisdom.
If you don't live it, it won't come out your horn."

Charlie Parker

"If thine enemy wrongs thee, buy each of his children a drum."
Chinese Proverb

"I see my life in terms of music."
Albert Einstein

(Printed notice in an American dancing saloon)
"Please do not shoot the pianist. He is doing his best."

"Practice! Practice! Practice!"

"Watch the Director!"

(Bumper sticker)
"pp -- I'll wait."

"If you don't want to be told what to do, be already doing it."

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This page last updated on December 1, 2011

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