Greetings, Empower Youth in the Performing Arts friends and Southwind family.

This is a very exciting time for our organization, as we prepare to hit the road for touring again in 2022. Some of the pandemic obstacles that prevented us from touring safely this year have already been removed, and we anticipate that the rest will be dropped over the next few months.

Empower Youth in the Performing Arts is the parent organization for Southwind Drum & Bugle Corps, our flagship organization. The board is planning our first ever retreat for this fall where we will meet in person to discuss the long-term future of the organization. While we are, understandably, keeping many of the topics under wraps for the present, there is a lot of excitement among the board members. I can share that fund raising is going to one of the primary focuses for the weekend.

The retreat will include more than just our board members. We will also have some of our recent alumni to serve in an advisory capacity, and as potential successors to the current organization leadership, when it’s time for us to pass on the reins. The retreat will be held at Camp McDowell, which we are auditioning as a potential site for Southwind 2022 move-ins.

Southwind had so much momentum going into the last pre-pandemic season that it was heartbreaking to all of us to have to sit out for a couple of years. It will be difficult to pick back up where we left off. However, there are two ways that you can help us get Southwind up and running again.

First, help us get the word out that Southwind is back. We will be in Indy next year. Share our social media posts with your friends and followers, and talk us up with your band director and drum corps contacts. Tell them how Southwind impacted your life or your child’s. Let’s set a record for number of attendees at our first camp in a few months.

Second, you can help us by donating. Even small amounts go a long way to helping us pay our talented staff, insurance, and day to day expenses like printer paper. Currently, you can give using our PayPal account ([email protected]) or by sending a check to our address below.

Southwind Drum & Bugle Corps
P.O. Box 851874
Mobile, AL 36685

Thank you, and I look forward to seeing many of you at our show next summer.

Ken Austin (’81)