Kelly Norton, during her days as a marching member of Phantom Regiment

As an 11 year old child, joining a Drum and Bugle Corps was something that I had no decision making power over. It was going to happen regardless of what I felt because my oldest sister had marched before me and was then part of a small group of former members that wanted to start a new corps in our city. That was 1974. In 1979, at the Toledo Key to the Sea competition, I saw and fell in love with the Phantom Regiment. I knew that I would march incredibly talented group of people (as soon as my mother would let me make that 5 hour trip around the lake to Illinois!)   I was then privileged to belong for 6 years as a member and staff member, and again today as a member of the alumni board of directors. To this day, my closest friends are people I marched with and those that I serve with now.

Those early years contributed greatly to the person I am today and the lifelong relationships that remain with people all over the country. That experience also gave me my 3 phantastic children and put me on the path to a highly successful career.

One of the things I look forward to the most every summer is being able to actually see and hug some of these people in Rockford at the Show of Shows. I simply cannot imagine what my life would be like today without Drum Corps, the Phantom Regiment and the hundreds of people I met over the years. The positive influence in unmeasurable.

Think about your own experience….. Maybe it’s very similar to mine, maybe it’s not…… what did your time with the Phantom Regiment do for you and how has it helped to shape your life? Now imagine being able to stand on a competition field, in full performance attire, blowing, drumming or spinning in front of a crowd again? With some of your very best friends right there with you! Did you get a flutter in your stomach?

60thThis is your chance….. your chance to be part of something amazing AND help the organization that helped shape your life. We are quickly approaching the deadline for registration for the 60th Anniversary Celebration, July 8th and 9th. You still have time to be involved and create more new lifelong friends and priceless memories.

Here are the events for the Celebration weekend:

Friday, July 8, 2016 – Tebala Event Center – 7910 Newburg Rd.  Rockford, IL

2:00 pm 5:00 pm Rehearsal (mandatory)
6:30 pm 10:00 pm 60th Anniversary Party
(Happy hour 6:30; Buffet dinner 7:30)


Saturday, July 9, 2016 – Boylan Catholic High School – 4000 St. Francis Dr.  Rockford, IL

10:00 am 12:30 pm Section Rehearsal (mandatory)
12:30 pm 2:00 pm Lunch with the Regiment (ticket required)
2:00 pm 4:00 pm Rehearsal (mandatory)
4:00 pm 5:30 pm Watch Regiment Rehearsal (optional)
5:30 pm 7:00 pm VIP Barbecue Dinner (optional)
7:30 pm Show of Shows starts (tentative start time)


Alumni performance following announcement of scores (actual time: TBA)
PRAA Hospitality Tent re-opens after performance

Registration and pricing is available here. Deadline for registration is May 1st 2016 so register now so that you can start practicing! I look forward to seeing or meeting you in July!


Kelly (Boshoven) Norton
60th Anniversary Celebration Manager