Parrothead donation will see Denver Nuggets’ Skyline Drumline provide drums to Moffat County High School
Laying down a beat has become especially challenging for Moffat County High School drummers using equipment that in some cases may be more than 30 years old.
The percussion students are set to get a major league boost when the director of music for the high school and middle school, Erik Memmott, purchases the Skyline Drumline — made famous for performances during Denver Nuggets basketball — later this year.
Originally, Memmott said he was “daunted by the numbers.”
Then he started talking with Rob Schenck, captain of the Northwest Colorado Chapter of the Parrotheads and learned that group would be willing to help raise funds.
“When we first approached Dr. Ulrich, we were offering to fully cover the cost of a lower quality set. To Dave’s credit, he immediately offered $4,000 from the school district and that will allow us to purchase a very special high-end set,” Schenck said.
With more money to work with, Memmott set about finding a drumline — a section of percussion instruments usually played as part of a musical marching ensemble.
Through the school district partnership with the Denver Nuggets, Memmott learned that the professional drummers who appear at Nuggets games were willing to sell.
“We are purchasing their exact drumline. Those drums on TV will become Moffat County High School drums,” he told members of the Moffat County Board of Education during a check presentation held at their meeting, Thursday, Feb. 21. “It’s an incredible opportunity.”
He’s hopeful that Skyline Drumline and the Denver Nuggets will “bring in the new set with a bit of flair” by visiting Craig.
“Tonight our biggest contribution yet, of $3,500 will go to the high school and Craig Middle School to purchase a much-needed drumline,” said Julie Sperl, member of Northwest Colorado Chapter of the Parrotheads and teacher. “10 years ago NCCPH formed as a philanthropic organization devoted to our community, art, recreation, and music- especially in the schools.”
They have given scholarships for lessons and camps to several students, supported the Craig Concert Association by providing funds to pay the students that run the sound and lights, provided a class set of ukuleles for Sunset, a xylophone for Sandrock, new strings for ukuleles at Ridgeview, and provided and repaired instruments for students at CMS.
“We are not just about music, we are also about your art programs,” Schenck said. “If you know a teacher that needs money for something we are here to do that.”
The district was also awarded a $100,000 school safety grant to install new door locks at Sandrock Elementary School and the high school, and new digital radios to replace the UHF system used by bus drivers and maintenance teams.
The radios were so bad that John Wall said from the Yampa Building staff were unable to contact Ridgeview. Using a test system Ulrich said that Jarrod Ogden, transportation, maintenance director of facilities and maintenance, was able to conduct a fire drill at a Craig school while he was in Maybell.
“The radios are so much better this will increase safety and issues our busses might have in the field,” said school board President Jo Ann Baxter.
The school board also approved it consent agenda, increased to $68,000 a letter of credit the district is required to keep as part of a self-funded insurance plan.
They also empowered Ulrich to enter into a contract with consultants for the purpose of developing a facilities master plan and to enter into negotiations for the transfer of the Yampa Building to the county under Memorial Regional Health management.
Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com.
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