Blue Thunder Marching Band headed to Oregon for Festival of Bands

The thump of the Blue Thunder Marching Band at the recent October competition at Galena High School goes like this: first, first, first and first.

The band, under the guidance of new Band Director Felicia Wirgau, took first in their division, which was B, essentially mid-sized bands, first for best percussion and best front ensemble and finally, first for best pit crew (run by parents).

"We were very excited," Wirgau said. "The kids did wonderful."

Blue Thunder performed at the homecoming game Friday at Carson High School, and Saturday rehearsed for the upcoming Oct. 22 Festival of Bands in Eugene, Ore.

"I would say (the Oregon competition) is the one the kids look forward to the most for sure," Wirgau said. "We have some of the biggest and best bands from the West Coast participate. Really, some of the top bands go. It's definitely going to be different than the competitions we're going to around here."

Anyone who wants to help sponsor the band on their trip should call Marina Crounk at 721-2653. Blue Thunder will also perform in the Nevada Day Parade and compete at the University of Nevada, Reno later that day.

Community Awareness Fair

Three students from Brian Reedy's advanced video production class spoke to the school board Tuesday about their community awareness fair scheduled from 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 22.

The project is part of their "Building Awareness, Taking Action" driver-awareness idea for State Farm. The students received $2,000 for their proposal, which ranked the top among 500 entries. Twenty-five teams nationwide are competing, and CHS Student Greg Saunders is responsible for documenting the school's project.

"Depending on how well he does, we'll place in the top 10 or the best in the country," joked Reedy. "So no pressure."

Board president James Hukari said, "If I were you, I'd go home and get busy."

Events at the fair include an obstacle course where students will drive golf carts or "mock cars" to assess their skills, a blood drive and drug prevention and trick-or-treat safety information. For more on the event, call Reedy at 283-1652. Trustee John McKenna commended the students for being model citizens.

New teachers to receive signing bonuses

The board instructed Richard Stokes, associate superintendent of human resources for the school district, to ask for reimbursement from the state for new teacher signing bonuses. There were 32 new teachers to the district, each of whom will receive a $2,000 bonus.

"I'm surprised that it's funded," Hukari joked. "It's amazing."

Teachers should be receiving the bonus the last pay period in October.

New benefits for teachers

A new employee-assistance program is available for staff in the Carson City School District due to benefits made possible through the Nevada Insurance Pool. Staff can take advantage of six free visits for mental health, substance abuse or family issues. Any teacher who does not already have the number, can call Stokes at 283-2003.

Scoggin becomes

president of NASB

Trustee Norm Scoggin was named president of the Nevada Association of School Boards at its annual conference in Las Vegas.

Meeting at Empire

A public meeting is scheduled for 7:45 a.m. Tuesday in portable D1 at Empire Elementary School. Principal Pat Carpenter will talk about the Even Start, English as a second language and kindergarten programs. Empire is at 1260 Monte Rosa Drive.

ACT Deadline approaching

The deadline for the next ACT is Nov. 4, with a late registration deadline of Nov. 17. The test is on Dec. 10 with tests in the areas of math, reading, English and science. An optional writing test is available. To register, go online to The fee is $29.


There are no more professional development days this month The next two are scheduled for Nov. 16 and 30, both Wednesdays.

n Contact reporter Maggie O'Neill at or 881-1219.


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