Donations, volunteers sought for annual event
by Tad Johnson
Buying an old cookie jar or a picture frame at the Rosemount High School Band Garage Sale will be music to the ears of many young people this spring.
That’s because the proceeds from the 10th annual sale Saturday, May 5, will fund such essentials as sheet music or a scholarship for a student who can’t afford band participation fees.
It’s that higher purpose that organizers hope will spur people to donate gently used items to be sold and for people to bring cash or their checkbook to the sale that has a cornucopia of hidden gems, including Christmas decorations, clothes, kitchen contraptions and much more.
The goal for this year’s sale is $10,000 to match the 10th year sale milestone.
Last year, the program netted $8,500, which funded sheet music for all the school’s bands.
“The proceeds have also made scholarships available for students who wouldn’t be able to participate without the financial assistance,” said Tricia Remus, a garage sale organizer, “whether it’s for instrument rental or to participate in the marching band.”
Proceeds also help to offset transportation costs related to the marching band’s equipment trailer.
Funds help repair and purchase some of the school-owned instruments, including percussion, tuba, bass clarinet, baritone, bassoon, French horn, etc.
Band director Steve Olsen said the school never used to use fundraiser money to purchase such instruments, but it does now.
“Due to recent budget cuts (the past few years) as our band program continues to grow, we have used a small portion of the garage sale profits to purchase traditionally provided ‘school-owned’ instruments for students that enter our program from middle school so they have an instrument to use and may continue their participation in the band program in high school,” Olsen said.
Despite the budget shortfalls, Olsen said the school district has allocated funding very fairly.
“Funding is tight for everything,” Olsen said. “We do rely on a significant amount of fundraising efforts to maintain the same level of music education that we have traditionally offered to our students at Rosemount.”
Donations for the sale, which raises money to support the band program, will be accepted Saturday, April 28, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Sunday, April 29, from 12-3 p.m., and Monday, April 30, through Thursday, May 3, from 5-8 p.m. Large items such as furniture will be received Friday, May 4, in the student center beginning at 2:30 p.m.
There will be two semi-trailers, donated by Justman Freightliners of Eagan, in the high school parking lot to collect and store items.
Organizers are seeking volunteers to help during the collection week and most importantly during setup on Friday afternoon and during the sale.
“We have wonderful volunteers,” Remus said.
She said the sale requires at least 30 adult volunteers and about 90 students to collect, sort and display the items. Volunteers also are cashiers and chefs at a food stand outside the school.
“The RHS band students never cease to impress me with their willingness to volunteer and have fun while doing it,” Remus said.
As one would guess, most of the adult volunteers are parents of students in the band program.
But that’s not a prerequisite for helping out. Remus said adults and students are still needed to lend a hand.
“The more the merrier,” Remus said.
Those who are interested can register online at www.rosemountband.com and click on the garage sale logo.
Tad Johnson is at [email protected] or facebook.com/sunthisweek.