KUSSI and alumni donations lessen costs
By Andrew Gocek
The KU marching unit has received funding for the purchase of new band uniforms to be showcased next season. The final designs and financial details are currently being negotiated with Stanbury Uniforms of Brookfield, Mo.
The funding is being provided by KUSSI and donations from KUMU alumni. KUMU receives funding each school year to set aside in an account that is only used for the purchase of new uniforms. The estimated cost of the 150 uniforms is $75,000-$85,000.
The new outfits will still include the KU colors of maroon and gold along with black and white sections. The price of the uniforms includes new helmets, plumes, jackets, gauntlets and overall pants.
“The process for saving enough money for the new uniforms takes around 10 years,” said Daniel Neuenschwander, KU band director. He believes the current uniforms were purchased back in 2006 and are in need of repair and replacement.
KUMU is one of the largest student organizations on campus with 138 students during the 2016 season. The organization continues to grow larger each school year.
“[The uniforms] are going to present a clean, wholesome image that represents the hard-working nature of KUMU members along with some aspects of the old and new university,” said Neuenschwander.
Sophomore and KUMU bass drummer Justin Reel said, “I am excited for the new look and confidence these new uniforms are going to give the band.”
The majority of the band has not seen the draft images of the new uniforms yet, so they are eagerly awaiting the start of next season in August.
KUMU represents KU by making many public appearances throughout their season. These events take them around the Lehigh Valley and all across the state of Pennsylvania.
Recently, KUMU performed in the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade, along with numerous other parades around the local area.
The band travels to several high school marching band exhibitions. A large portion of the incoming members hear about KU and KUMU from these public appearances.
“We have students that come from six or seven different states and even a student from South Africa,” said Neunschwander.
According to the membership roster, KUMU members represent nearly every undergraduate field of study that KU has to offer.
“I think that it’s really cool how diverse the student body of KUMU is and how many different majors are in it,” said Reel.
A reveal date for the new KUMU uniforms has not yet been released.