Photo by JEFF STOKOE/Advocate staff Maurice Boismenu of Chandos Construction Ltd. works in the new fieldhouse at St. Joseph’s High School in Red Deer where the Red Deer Royals will rehearse.

Red Deer Royals “excited” to move into their new home in April

Youth marching band is preparing for a competition in The Netherlands this summer

The year is starting on an optimistic note for the Red Deer Royals.

Not only did the community youth band receive official ‘Red Deer ambassador’ status from council, but also received $250,000 from the municipality towards the construction of a fieldhouse at the new St. Joseph’s High School in Timberlands.

Band director Michael Mann said it’s an honour to be officially recognized as Red Deer ambassadors, a role he feels his band had unofficially taken on for years.

His 90-some band members are also thrilled to hear that construction on their new Red Deer Royals home base is four months ahead of schedule — meaning they will be able to start using the fieldhouse for rehearsals by early April.

“We’re very excited,” said Mann, who’s preparing the teenage musicians for an international competition this summer. The Royals will head to The Netherlands, with stops in Germany and Belgium, right after marching in the Westerner Days Parade.

Being able to rehearse in one large space — a structure big enough to accommodate the whole marching band and colour guard — is a relief after having to move around different temporary rehearsal spaces around Central Alberta, Mann added.

The Royals, who will share the fieldhouse with Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools, are now on their way towards covering their $2.7 million share of construction costs. The long-term agreement with Catholic district ensures the Royals have appropriate rehearsal and performance space that’s wheelchair accessible and will include some acoustic features.

The Royals will have a 50th birthday celebration in 2019 — the same year the Canada Winter Games come to Red Deer and the marching band will help entertain the athletes.

The band performs at annual events around Alberta and has competed in Europe, Australia, the United States and Asia.

Just Posted

Sunnybrook pies in demand

Just in time for Easter

Rocky RCMP officer who fired a weapon at fleeing vehicle is under investigation

Driver “appeared unhurt” in incident on O’Chiese First Nation

Emotional impact of hurtful words explored in art exhibit

Self-worth is closely tied to physical image, says artist

WATCH: Red Deerians can have a say about crime fighting

Municipality will poll citizens about policing priorities

21-year-old charged with drug trafficking in Rocky Mountain House

RCMP seized drugs after conducting a traffic stop and charged a 21-year-old… Continue reading

Liberal bill would tighten controls on sale, licensing of firearms

OTTAWA — Gun retailers would be required to keep records of firearms… Continue reading

Alberta factoring in Trans Mountain pipeline in budget forecasts

EDMONTON — Finance Minister Joe Ceci says Alberta will rely on anticipated… Continue reading

Pooches and pickup truck stolen in Edmonton found in Rimbey

Two old English bulldogs named Rocky and Jersey who were in a… Continue reading

Statistics Canada reports wholesale sales up 0.1 per cent in January

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says wholesale sales rose 0.1 per cent to… Continue reading

Right whale deaths cost Gulf snow crab fishery its designation as sustainable

HALIFAX — An international organization has suspended a sustainability certificate for the… Continue reading

Financial watchdog says controls to mitigate sales risk at banks ‘insufficient’

TORONTO — Canada’s financial consumer watchdog says there are “insufficient” controls in… Continue reading

Sheriff official: 3 injured in Maryland high school shooting

GREAT MILLS, Md. — A shooting at a Maryland high school Tuesday… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month