Drums Across Kansas will celebrate its 22nd year when drum corps take to the field in El Dorado on July 15.
“I challenge anyone who has never seen this event to take a look at it,” said event organizer Ross Viner. “I have never had anyone who has watched tell me they did not like what they saw.”
This is the fourth time the event will be in El Dorado, brought to the community when city management reached out to organizers and gave Viner a tour of the stadium.
“I really like that stadium, BG Products Veteran’s Stadium. It is a great set up for a competition,” Viner said. “ … Ever since then, it has been great. It keeps building every year.”
The exhibition draws between 2,000 and 2,500 fans who want to watch Drum Corps who compete as part of Drum Corps International.
Viner calls drum corps a “marching band on steroids.”
This year the lineup will feature the defending national champion (Santa Clara Vanguard) and the runner up (Blue Devils) competing during the evening event.
July 15 there will be six drum corps, averaging 150 members each, competing at Drums Across Kansas.
“This is a great event for youth. The average age of these drum corps is around 19 years old. This is another way to introduce a music competition,” Viner said. “All you have is bugles, drums, dance and color guard. These drills are so hard. You will not believe the formations you see.”
Drum corps are formed after an audition process — thousands of musicians and athletes competing for just a few spots on about 40 corps across the country. Once formed, the practice begins.
“They won’t use their horns for two weeks because they don’t want to have any injuries from people getting too close or bumping into each other,” Viner said.
Tickets for the event start at $22. Doors of the stadium will open at 5:30 p.m. July 15.
Drums Across Kansas Schedule
7 p.m. — Welcome & National Anthem
7:10 p.m. — Mandarins - Sacramento, California
7:27 p.m. — Crossmen - San Antonio, Texas
7:44 p.m. — Blue Knights - Denver, Colorado
8:01 p.m. — The Cadets - Allentown, Pennsylvania
8:18 p.m. — Intermission
8:48 p.m. — Santa Clara Vanguard - Santa Clara, California
9:05 p.m. — Blue Devils - Concord, California
9:22 p.m. — Encore
9:47 p.m. — Scores Announced