New Band Students

Welcome

Welcome to the award-winning Fort Mill Band!  By joining this organization, your child will become part of a legendary program made up of students devoted to excellence in music and integrity of character.  As a parent, you also have an opportunity to get involved in the program in various roles that help keep the band moving forward. It’s important for you and your student to get plugged in to all that’s happening.  The information below will help you get up and running as you prepare for your first season.

First Things First – Forms and Registration

Please read the band handbook and fill out and return the following forms as soon as possible.  The handbook may be accessed by logging into your Charms account. Completed forms must be on file prior to Band Camp.

BAND STUDENT FORMS

Charms Registration

Charms is our secure payment website and is used by top bands across the country.  You will be assigned a log-in credential for the site. Please be sure and add your parent information, including email addresses, as soon as you receive your log-in credential. Weekly e-blasts of the band newsletter are sent to the addresses listed in Charms only.

Financial:  Paying Fees

All band fees and any charges for uniform accessories may be paid using the Charms account.  You may check the status of your student’s account at any time using this site.  Payments by check are also accepted.  Please make checks payable to FMDBBC and mail them to FMDBBC, 2764 Pleasant Road #10503, Fort Mill, SC  29708-7299.

It is critical that all payments be made on schedule.  The band’s ability to meet financial obligations depends on budgeted monthly income.

Partial scholarships are available for families who are facing financial hardship.  To request a scholarship application email [email protected].  Your request is confidential.

Explaining Fees

An award-winning band program is not an inexpensive endeavor.  Band fees are determined each year to cover the cost of operating the band and providing everything necessary to train and compete.  The booster club subsidizes a portion of the cost for each student through fundraising and the rest is billed to each family in the form of band fees.  These fees are collected over a period of several months in order to reduce the financial impact.

The school district assesses a $100 activity fee for each student.  This fee is also charged to athletes and other participants in various school activities.  This money goes directly to the district and not to the band.  The fee must be paid before the first home football game.  Students with unpaid activity fees are not permitted to participate in the game per district rules.

Each student is provided with a full band uniform.  There are accessories that are the student’s responsibility and these include gloves, MTX shoes, etc.  Charges for accessories may also be paid through the Charms website.

What Do I Need To Buy?

Your student will be given a show shirt at the end of band camp.  This shirt will be worn at home football games while the weather is still warm and under the uniform later in the season.  You may purchase extra shirts if you wish.  This can be helpful as we often have Friday night games and Saturday morning events.  Students will also need the following items:

  • Navy shorts (dress code length)
  • Compression shorts
  • Plain, long black socks
  • Performance gloves (uniform committee will order and bill to your Charms account)
  • MTX shoes (uniform committee will order and bill to your charm account)

Color Guard

Accessories will be ordered through the guard moms in August.  Prices will be announced at that time, but $100 is a good budget amount.  Color Guard members will need:

  • Wind Suit
  • Dance Shoes
  • Makeup and Hair accessories

Concert Attire

During concert band season during the second semester students will need concert attire.

Girls:  Black, unadorned, floor-length gown (opaque all the way to the floor) with short or long sleeves.  Shoulders must be covered.  No low necklines or backs.  No side slits or high slits.  No strapless or sleeveless gowns or spaghetti straps.  No tulle or other transparent material.  No rhinestones or excessive detail.  Cuts should be modest. Black dress shoes.  **Girls should wear gowns unless instructed by the Director to wear trousers to accommodate specific instruments.  NO SHORT DRESSES, regardless of instrument.

Boys:  Black tuxedo with white shirt.  Black bow tie.  Black cummerbund or vest/waistcoat.  Black dress shoes with black socks.  No tennis shoes.

Men’s Wearhouse in Rock Hill (at Manchester) offers student tuxedos at very good prices.  Gowns may be ordered online.  Here are examples of approved looks and some online retailers:

http://www.concertattire.com/category_s/42.htm
http://www.sepapparel.com/concert-dresses/

Communications – Staying Informed

Website

There are several ways to stay in the loop with what’s going on.  The best way is right here at fortmillhighschoolband.com.  Check back frequently for news items and calendar updates.

E-blast

Once a week a mass email is sent to everyone who has listed an email address in Charms.  This email covers the most pressing items in the band’s schedule in detail and highlights important dates.

Facebook

Join our Facebook group “The Fort Mill Band Forum.”  This is an interactive group page where you can post questions for other band parents.  Event information is also posted here on an informal basis.  Percussion has its own group page: FMHS Percussion.  Other sections may also start groups each season.

Twitter

Follow us @FortMillHSBand.  Tweets are issued when the band is traveling to update parents on competition results and to report expected arrival times back at school on those late nights.

Contact Us

If you have a question you may contact us anytime by clicking the mail icon on the homepage of this site or by emailing us directly at [email protected].

Volunteering

The success of the Fort Mill Band program is dependent on parent volunteers for everything from fundraising to uniform maintenance to feeding students and pit crewing.  Every family is expected to participate during the year. It takes a well-oiled machine to keep the band moving forward and we need your help. Remember, the booster club subsidizes a portion of each student’s band fees to keep the cost to families down as much as possible.  When you help with fundraising, donate water and sodas for camp, and give of your time to help sew flags or wash uniforms, you keep the wheels turning.  Look for opportunities to lend your expertise to the band program.

Performances and Competitions

The band performs at all home football games unless it conflicts with a competition.  Students will be expected approximately two hours before game time and they are required to stay for the entire game and return to the band room as a group where they will change clothes, muster, and be dismissed.  This can take up to an hour after the game ends.  Students play during the first half and at halftime and they have the third quarter of the game “off.”  During this quarter they have time to eat at the concession stand.  They play again for the fourth quarter.  Please do not make plans to have your student leave early.  They go to the stadium as a group and leave as a group.

During competition season (late September through October), we will often have Friday night games and Saturday morning call times for competitions.  Purchasing a second show shirt can prevent late night laundry emergencies.

Parents are encouraged to attend competitions as often as possible.  The excellence of the Fort Mill Band program is evident when we’re on the road and new parents are often unprepared for the pride they feel watching this band take the field under competition conditions.

The band hosts community performances at the beginning and end of the season.