By Ben Lawson
No strangers to community service, the Seymour High School Marching Band set out this year to establish a new formula for getting out into the community by donating hundreds of books to the Seymour Library.
In the past, the band would raise money for certain needy families in the area. Richard Mann, with the band boosters, noted that while this was a worthy goal, it didn’t directly involve the students.
“This year I’m trying to change it up and get the kids involved,” he said.
They selected the library, Mann said, due to its accessibility. Rather than just aide one or two people, the library has something for everyone. Library manager David Phillips echoed that sentiment.
“It’s extremely important because our funds to buy new things are very limited,” he said.
All members of the band participated by collecting books from friends and family between Aug. 18 and Sept. 1. By the time they delivered the entire truck load last Thursday, the collection numbered 958 books, 107 Magazines, one VHS Video, one puzzle, two DVD movies and 41 CDs.
“That was a little bit more than we were expecting,” Mann said.
On hand to receive the delivery was school board representative Charles Temple, library board chairman David Sarten, board member Marye Rose and Phillips. Several band members helped Mann and band director Rhett Butler drop off the books. Phillips indicated that the Seymour branch would use as much of the donated materials as they could and whatever remained would be distributed between Sevierville and Kodak.
The donation came just in time to help the library kick off its pre-kindergarten story time this month, which will run through May. The library will also hold a used book sale from Sept. 23 through Oct. 1 to help raise funds.
As for the band, they will continue looking for new ways to get the students directly involved in community service and fundraising.
“When you do a good thing, it touches people’s lives,” Mann said. “Hopefully this will have an impact on the kids in the future.”
Last weekend, the band raised $2,300 at a yard sale and they will be kicking off their fruit sales this week. For anyone interested in placing a fruit order, contact Mann at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Band Drives Reading Home
By Ben Lawson