Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Buccaneers?

The Reading Buccaneers are a 501C3 non-profit organization competing in the Marching Arts circuit called Drum Corps Associates (DCA).  Our mission is to provide people of all ages a unique and enriching educational experience in the performing arts in which they develop as individuals and performers

Who runs the Buccaneers?

The Reading Buccaneers are run by an administration team consisting of volunteers.  The administration team is supported by a team of additional volunteers that help with the day-to-day operations of the corps.  The members are taught by a team of staff, most of whom are professional educators.  Background checks are performed on all staff, volunteers, and administration.

Do you have spots open for 2023?

Yes!  Spots are available in all sections.  Everyone, including vets, earn a spot each year.

What show are the Buccaneers performing in 2023?

Come to Membership Day and you will find out!

How much does it cost?

There is a $50 non-refundable fee that is collected at your first attended camp.  Full tuition for this season will remain the same as 2022 at $1200, to be paid in full by the beginning of June for brass and percussion and by the end of the season for guard.  Additional costs may include member-specific needs such as shoes, gloves, etc.

Are there opportunities for tuition assistance?

Yes.  There are scholarship opportunities presented throughout the year that offer partial tuition assistance.  Members will be made aware of these opportunities as they come up.  Members typically will need to apply to be considered for these opportunities.

How often are rehearsals?

During the winter season rehearsals occur on average two weekends per month starting the end of November and going through April.  Weekends will either be Saturday and Sunday, or just Sunday.  A typical day runs 9am to 6pm.

 

Starting in May and through the end of the competitive season on Labor Day, rehearsals run every weekend from Friday night at 7pm through Sunday 4pm.

Do members need to attend all rehearsals?

It is expected that members attend every rehearsal.  During the winter we understand that scholastic based activities can and should take priority.  Members can communicate any conflict ahead of time to staff.  Once late spring comes around we ask that members make the Buccaneers the priority.

Do you feed the members?

We do not provide meals every weekend.  Camp updates are provided before every camp and will notify members if meals are being provided.  If we are feeding the corps we may ask for a nominal $5-$10 to cover some of the cost.  If we are not feeding the corps, members will be on their own for meals.  Food establishments are typically near our rehearsal facilities, making it easy to get meals.

Does the corps house members?

The corps typically does not house members overnight.  The main exception is finals weekend when we travel to Rochester, NY for championships.  We do work with alumni, friends, and other members of the corps that offer overnight stays at their homes for members that are traveling long distances.  Our Membership Manager can work with members that feel they may need housing assistance, but we cannot guarantee that we will be able to find housing for all.  

How do the Buccaneers communicate with members?

Communications are mainly through 2 channels; email and FaceBook.  FaceBook groups are used to communicate day to day updates during rehearsals.  Section specific FaceBook groups may be used for education purposes, i.e. to communicate changes to music or weekly assignments.  Email is used to provide camp updates.

Can parents be included in communications?

Parents can be configured to receive email updates that are sent to their child.

Are there age restrictions?

DCA is an all age activity, however, given the nature of the activity the Buccaneers have instituted a policy that all members must be 16 years old on or before Labor Day during any competitive season.

Can parents watch rehearsals?

Absolutely.  Our camps are open camps, meaning that you can attend and watch if you’d like.  The only requirement is that anyone attending a camp must be fully vaccinated and show proof as such.

How are spots given out to members?

No one is guaranteed a spot.  Our musical and visual staff will evaluate members for experience and capability to learn and improve upon what they are being asked to perform.  Other factors include attendance and adherence to the core values of the corps as described in our Member Policy.

Do members feel safe at the Buccaneers?

The Reading Buccaneers administration strives to provide an inclusive and safe environment for all members.  Last year all members, staff, administration and volunteers were SafeSport trained, which focused on abuse awareness and prevention.  The Buccaneers also have a comprehensive policies that covers important topics including but not limited to expected behaviors, abuse and harassment, safety protocols, and whistleblower policy.

Is the COVID 19 Vaccination required to participate in 2023?

Yes, COVID-19 Vaccinations are required, no exceptions.  Primary COVID-19 shot series must be completed in addition to at least one booster shot. This is to enable the Buccaneers Administration to provide the safest environment possible for members, staff, volunteers, and admin.

You may attend in the below scenarios with agreement that the bivalent booster will be administered as soon as you are eligible:

-   You’ve completed your primary series of shots (2 shots) and are in the waiting period before you are eligible for a booster.

-   You’ve recently gotten over a COVID infection and are in the waiting period before you are eligible for a booster.

Who can I reach out to if I have additional questions?

You may contact us at membership.manager@readingbuccaneers.org and let us know what your question is!