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LB Jr. Concert Band -- Celebrating Its 60th Anniversary This Year -- Is About To Lose Its Rehearsal Hall, Office & Storage Space Shared In City-Leased NLB Bldg; Band Is Actively Searching For New Facility

(Mar. 28, 2012) -- The Long Beach Junior Concert Band -- the City's official Host Band celebrating its 60th anniversary this year -- is about lose the rehearsal hall, office and storage space it's been sharing in a City-leased NLB building...and it's actively looking for a new location to call home.

The Band has been told by city officials that for budget reasons, it has to vacate space at the North Long Beach Community Center by June or July (city's lease expires in August)...and the Band is looking for a new base of operations with room to rehearse and store its equipment.

Sept. 2010 photo

"Imagine if you will a High School Marching Band and all the equipment, uniforms, vehicles and other items associated with it suddenly being left with no home. This is what the band is facing," the Band says in a statement.

The beloved all-volunteeer LB Jr. Concert Band -- home to thousands of young musicians and pageantry members -- was founded in 1952 by Marvin Marker and led by him until his sudden passing in Dec. 2009. The LB Jr. Concert Band is a registered non-profit youth organization and has been throughout the western U.S. and as far away as Yokkaichi, Japan. Among its performance venues is the Belmont Shore Christmas Parade and Wrigley's Christmas Tree Lane parade where it draws cheers annually.

Below are photos showing LB's Jr. Concert Band spent Labor Day 2010: its members suited up and traveled to a park in every LB City Council district to deliver a free quick concert (photos below).

[LB Jr. Concert Band text] With the creed of "Character Building Through Music," the band has helped countless young people prepare for their adult lives by promoting work ethic, loyalty, honesty, teamwork, family values, responsibility and much more. Many, many teens have credited the band with teaching them to lead productive and successful lives and saved them from the path of wrongdoing.

For many years the band has become home to underprivileged young people who have benefited greatly from the all volunteer staff, most of whom are past members themselves. Not only members have benefited from being part of the band, but many others lives have been touched as well.

You may have seen news coverage in December of this past year where members and alumni presented a Long Beach man, Nelson Miles with his own concert band snare drum. Nelson who has cerebral palsy has loved the band since seeing it on television in the Hollywood Christmas parade. In 2010 the band presented Nelson his own band jacket and made him an honorary band member. [LBReport.com coverage, click here.]

Countless working professionals have called the band home at one time and still support the organization either on a monetary or voluntary basis. Alumni of the band are based all over the United States and as far away as Thailand. They serve their communities as Lawyers, Dentists, Pastors, Paramedics and Police Officers.

Throughout the past 60 years the band has performed for audiences at Inauguration ceremonies for Governors, Future Presidents, Miss Universe Pageants, Movie Premieres, appeared in movies, Television Commercials, Rose Bowl Parades, and has won over 1500 trophies at parades in California, Arizona, Oregon and Nevada. The band can usually be heard in all the parades in Long Beach and only last year completed performances in each of the nine city council districts on the same day.

The Band notes in a statement: "For a number of years the band received financial support from the city mainly in providing rehearsal, office and storage space but with recent cuts in the city budget this is no longer an option. Aside from this support, the band has been able to raise funding through donations, fundraisers and performances to cover the other costs associated with running such an organization."

[LBReport.com comment: We remain puzzled as to why city officials haven't invited LB's all-volunteer Jr. Concert Band to provide a week of music for LB's now-shortened summer concerts-in-the-park series. This would provide the public with free music during one of the weeks now silenced due to budget constraints (LB's Municipal Band is comprised of paid professional musicians). Letting the all-volunteer Jr. Concert Band perform across the city would also allow it to "pass the hat" and help support itself.]

The immediate challenge for the LB Jr. Concert Band is to find a location where it can store its equipment and give its talented young musicians a place to rehearse...a place to call home in the City where it has been a loyal, continuing presence for sixty years.

The LB Jr. Concert Band's contact email address is: hq@lbjcb.org

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