Scout Band





The Crossroads of America Scout Band welcomes everyone who is joining us on February 8th! Your first exposure might be intimidating-- rest assured that as you attend rehearsals and begin to make new friends in the band you will gain confidence and have an enjoyable experience.

Many of the "old timers" felt just like you when they first joined, but now express how much the Scout Band has helped them gain confidence in their musical abilities and the great times they have had in performances and on tours. If you get a chance, talk with some of the members who have been around a while and you will find that they are glad they stayed with the band.

We know that you are busy with school, troop and church activities-- but come around on Sunday as often as you can. YOU DO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Your parents can stay and meet other band supporters, or they can take care of errands during the 1  hours we are at rehearsal.

For those that are new to the band and as a refresher for those that have been around awhile, its appropriate to take a snapshot view of the band's rich heritage. After all, we are celebrating 87 years of Scouting and music in central Indiana -- THE OLDEST continuously organized Scout Band in the world!

The band was organized in 1917 as a drum and bugle corps by F.O. "Chief" Belzer to play at summer camp at Camp Chank-tun-un-gi as Camp Belzer was formerly named. In the 1920's the corps evolved into a full concert and marching band participating in many patriotic programs, displays, parades, and council functions.

The band takes its show on the road each year during its annual tour. Tours have taken the band to 47 of the 50 states in the US, Mexico, Canada and England. We have performed at Disney World, Universal Studios, Williamsburg, Washington, D.C., three World Fairs, National Order of the Arrow Conferences (NOAC) and National Jamborees in 1950, 53, 57, 60, 64, 69, 73, 77, 85, 89, 93 and 1997. The band performed at Kennedy Space Center in 1999 for the 30th anniversary of the first Lunar Landing. The band has played for five Presidents of the United States and the Queen of England.

In 2002 we headed north to Canada! We headed to Erie, Pennsylvania, Sturbridge, Massachusetts and then to Portland, Maine where we traveled by ferry to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia and on to Halifax, taking in the International Tattoo that features over 2000 entertainers in an inside arena.  From Nova Scotia we headed to Prince Edward Island (PEI).  All along the way we performed concerts and had a chance to meet other Scouts and Scouters. In 2003 we headed west to Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks.  Concerts were  played at each of these venues as well as a return engagement at Mount Rushmore in South Dakota where we played prior to the lighting of the monument.

Our tour plans for 2004 (July 10 - 17) will take us to the Lone Star State of Texas.  We will be making stops along the way in Tennessee and  Louisiana; then on the return trip we will be going through Alabama.  Plans include visits to the National Scout Museum, Johnson Space Center and the Gulf of Mexico.

We welcome you and invite you to come back each Sunday. We know everyone can't be here each week (it's NOT like school), but that makes us unique too! We NEVER have the same band except when we go on our annual tour. Join

us when you can and if you have questions or concerns don't be afraid to ask.


The band's chief money earning activity is providing manpower for a concession stand at the RCA Dome.

Our booth is  #142 just inside Gate 1. Anyone over the age of 16 can volunteer to work an event. There is a limit to the number we can use -- so it's a "first-come first-served" for signing up to work. "Uniform" consists of  black pants (no jeans), white collared shirt (we can provide one for $3.50) and band hat. Those that work an event earn $5.00 per hour and the money can go in a "personal account"  with the band, or used on other troop or Scouting activities OR be paid directly to the individual.

There is one event in the next few months, so new members (or parents) can still earn money. If you are interested in working at the dome -- contact Shirley Wiker  at rehearsals.

UPCOMING DOME EVENTSSaturday, March 20, 2004 --EA Sports Supercross (Motor Bikes) -- Report time will be announced at a later time.


The Belzer Band Booster Club sponsors Venture Crew 559. This unit was established (as an Explorer Post) in the early 1960's. As the program has evolved, females aged 14-21 were able to join the Exploring / Venturing programs

The Crew recharters in February, and all those youth and adult members whose PRIMARY

registration is with the crew, must make arrangements with Keith Hartzog, Treasurer to pay the annual $11.00 fee. ALL females MUST be registered with this or another crew to participate in the band. Youths or adults who have a primary registration in another scouting unit may "multiple" into the crew if so desired.

Notices will be sent to all registered members of the crew asking if they want to re-register. Current personal account statements will be sent also.  If you do not have money in your personal account, but want to recharter you MUSTsend a check to the BBBC for the $11.00 by February 15, otherwise you will be dropped off the charter.

If you are a multiple member of the crew and you do not let us know of your intention to remain with the crew, you will be dropped.


 The band will be participating in the 500 Mini Marathon as Course Entertainment on Saturday, May 8. Report time and location will be announced later at rehearsals and in the newsletters.  We will also be participating in the pre-race pageant at the 500 Race on Sunday, May 30.  There are close to 100 committed to march with the band as a colorguard.

BBBC-- WHAT IS IT?For the benefit of our guests and new members and their families, this newsletter will attempt to answer frequently asked questions about the band and its operation. The first is the will see and hear this referenced many times.

BBBC is short for Belzer Band Booster Club, Inc. which is incorporated in the State of Indiana and is the band's "owner / sponsor." the BBBC is comprised of the parents or any other interested parties of the Band. Membership dues in the BBBC are $5.00 per person per year. Generally dues are collected at the annual picnic; however ANY adult interested in supporting the band may join the BBBC membership at anytime. Just see Keith Hartzog, Treasurer to pay your dues.

The BBBC owns all the band's equipment and manages all of its assets. In addition, the BBBC sponsors Venture Crew 559. The BBBC is managed by a Board of Directors that meets monthly and conducts the business of the corporation and the band. The board meetings are generally the last Wednesday of the month. Questions or concerns can be addressed to any board member, BBBC members are welcome to attend any board meeting. Current Board Members are:

Bill Schofield, President
Bob Wiker, Vice President 
Keith Hartzog, Treasurer 
Carol Wiker, Recording Sec. 
Mary Jane Smock Corresponding Sec. 
Shirley Wiker, Ways and Means 
Dana Hanson, Property
John Valdez, Publicity 
Doug Whitcomb, Historian 
Howard Foster, Director/Crew Advisor 
Buddy McLaren, Youth President 
Margaret Estes, Youth V.P. Program 
Ben Rowe, Youth V.P. Admin.
Debbie Wheat, Alumni President 


We welcome the following new member who has joined the band since the last newsletter.

Chris Bloss -- Trumpet

  BAND BUCKS-- "Monthly Checks"

Several years ago the BBBC initiated a "Band Buck" program where each YOUTH member who attends an event receives a band buck. As the youth members accumulated these band bucks for rehearsal attendance, performance attendance, etc., periodic auctions are held where only band bucks can be used. Items auctioned have included patches, luggage, and camp stoves. The "BIG"ticket item auctioned at the annual picnic is an EXPENSE PAID TOUR for the next year. Buddy McLaren was the high bidder at our 2003 picnic and will be going on the 2004 expense paid!

At a BBBC Board Meeting, the youth proposed a change in the band buck program. This was done to assure an equal "playing field" for all youth members so  a single member has the same chances as "multiple member families" when it comes time for the auctions. Shirley Wiker  is responsible for maintaining a "band buck account" and issuing  checks to youth members. The amount of the check is dependent on the amount issued at each rehearsal and the youth member's attendance at that month's activities.  Each youth can bid on items based on the amount of band bucks available in their account.

 Concert Celebrating Scout Week The band has always used Scout Week as its anniversary and "birthday" since records do not indicate when the true date of formation was in 1917.  This year we were hit with a unique problem.  With the Colts doing so well, it was not known how many and when any home playoff games might occur.  Since we operate the Booth at the RCA Dome, it would draw our "regulars" away from an Open House (this actually happened a few years ago).  So.....this year to be safe, we scheduled the Open House AFTER Super Bowl weekend -- but that put us right at our anniversary party.  So those that attended the Open House on February 8th made HISTORY -- as this is the FIRST TIME EVER that we held an Open House AND a Concert on the same date! Thanks to all the help make the Open House AND our Birthday Party a success!

Ink Cartridge Recycling ProjectOur friends at the Duchess County Scout Band in New York passed on a great money earning project for the band.  All proceeds from this activity go into the band's general fund.  All you have to do is recycle ink cartridges from printers, fax machines or other type office equipment.

Debbie Wheat is chairing this activity and you can contact her for the details. Those that work in offices can set this up to collect cartridges and get them to Debbie.  She is bundling them and sending them off.  It doesn't cost the band anything and we get $2.00 per cartridge that is returned for recycling.  This is a way a lot of our parents or alumni could help out by getting this project set up and collection points established in several large offices throughout the central Indiana area.  Give Debbie a call if you are interested.

Pioneer District DinnerAdults who would like to attend the Pioneer District Dinner February 19 at the Indianapolis Marriott --  contact Keith Hartzog to arrange for tickets ($18.00 each).  Dinner is at 6:30 PM -- program starts at 7:45 PM.

2004 Tour Plans being MadeThe plans for the 2004 tour are in a "hold" pattern until it is determined there will be enough participants -- WILL YOU BE A PART OF THE BAND'S HIGH ADVENTURE?  Dates are July 10 - 17, 2004 and the cost is $550.00 per person... Price includes transportation, all meals and lodging and admissions to the attractions we will be visiting.

We will depart Indianapolis and head to Memphis, Tennessee then to Shreveport, Louisiana. From Shreveport we will head to Dallas, San Antonio, Houston and Galveston, Texas.  The route home will include Baton Rouge, LA and Birmingham, Alabama.  There will be concerts and sightseeing all along the way.  We will need a minimum of twenty (20) members to make this tour feasible.  If we don't achieve the twenty, an alternate plan for the summer will be made.

If you are interested in joining the band on tour, please see Bill Schofield and pick up an application.

February Dates
1 1:00 PM Dixieland Rehearsal
1:45 PM Crew Meeting
2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
15 2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
19 Pioneer District Dinner
Indianapolis Marriott - 21st Street
22 2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
25 7 PM BBBC Board Meeting
Schofield's House
26 Dixieland Performance for Pack 100
Lawrence United Methodist Church
Call John Valdez for info 546-5874
29 2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room

March Dates

7 1:00 PM Dixieland Rehearsal
1:45 PM Crew Meeting
2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
14 2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
21 2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
28 2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room
31 7 PM BBBC Board Meeting
Schofield's House

April Advance Dates

4 1:00 PM Dixieland Rehearsal
1:45 PM Crew Meeting
2:00 PM Full Band Rehearsal
WCHS Orchestra Room