If you’re like me, you value your inbox, so I’ve tried to not be intrusive and send multiple email requests. But with the year-end fast approaching, we need your help reaching our end of year fundraising campaign goals.

*** Donate to our End of Year Campaign Now ***

For those that received our initial mailing and have already donated – THANK YOU! Let people know you’ve donated on your social media pages as well as forward this on to your friends to help us increase our number of donors.

A few years ago, our end of year fundraising campaign was used to help us recover from the expenses of the summer (especially fuel costs). The financial future of the Phantom Regiment has drastically improved since 2008 and I’m happy to report that this campaign now helps us make capital improvements and, more importantly, help keep membership dues down.

Here are just a few of the major additions from this past year:

  • Purchased two new generators vital to the everyday operations of the corps
  • Purchased a new 16′ trailer needed to haul our pit gator and equipment
  • Upgraded our souvenir booth software & laptops to be more efficient and faster (we were using software from 2005)
  • Increased involvement with the Rockford Public Schools
  • Added another educational camp in Rockford (brass camp)
  • Moved our offices which required some purchases that we weren’t expecting (stay tuned for an exciting announcement about our move)
  • Finally added a full-time office manager

We are still fighting to keep membership dues in the corps down, as well as registration fees in our educational camps. This year, we had to institute a 4% increase in the membership dues which are more than $3,000 these days. This doesn’t include the costs each member incurs for travel to our monthly rehearsal camps. We are going to help with those travel costs this year by having one less camp this winter. Hopefully that will be a huge help to the members.

The membership dues only cover approximately 25% of the actual costs to the organization. The other 75% are raised through our various events and fundraisers. Basically, it comes down to our heroes like you to help make the Regiment be successful!

Last year, with our final year-end plea, we were able to exceed our budget by $2,000! This year, we are in a bit more dire need in order to make our goal. This is where we need your help. Our financial responsibility has been a key factor to the organization’s success, on & off the field. Reaching our goal of $30,000 will help keep us on the right path. But currently, we are $18,000 short of that goal.

We may have made it a little harder on ourselves this year by raising our goal, as well as starting a little later due to our office move in October. But I have faith that with the help of our heroes, YOU, we can close that gap dramatically, if not surpass our goal.

Besides the office relocation, another reason we want to end the year strong is because we need a new equipment trailer. Our current equipment trailer has been in operation with us since the early 2000’s, but the trailer itself is from 1986. We’ve squeezed every mile out of it that we can. Its served us well over the years, but it’s time for us to have something that’s more suited for our needs, as well as easier (and safer) for the members to load & unload.

Your tax-deductible contribution will make a huge impact. Every little bit helps as we strive to provide a life-changing experience for the young people in our many programs.   

For instance, a donation of $200 can…

  • Bring us 1.11% closer to our goal
  • Is 6.67% of the total cost of an average stop for the fleet at the gas station
  • Buy 2 days worth of milk (10 gallons), orange juice (6 gallons) and bread (15 loafs)

But don’t take my word for it hear from some of the young people that have benefited from the Phantom Regiment:

“My years with the Phantom Regiment have been the greatest of my life. This place takes me on a journey every year that allows me to grow more as a person and a performer than anything else I’ve ever been apart of. But what is truly inspiring is to experience what a completely dedicated group of people can accomplish. Where ever I go, I know I still have my phamily.”

Jake Bieser, Mellophone 2011-present

Round Rock, Texas

“The Phantom Regiment to me is more than just a performance outlet. It is a true family and has affected every aspect of my life. The way that we can make our audience members feel truly reflects our interactions with each other. With love, passion and faithfulness to the sport of drum corps and who we are as performers. People come to the Phantom Regiment as students and leave as true performers with a deep love for what they do.”

Kayla Kenyon, Color Guard 2011-13

Aurora, Colo.

“Being a part of this Phamily has changed my life. I didn’t only become a better performer, but as a foreign member I got to understand the different culture and language even better. The Phantom Regiment gave me the best experience I could ever ask for, and I can’t wait for the seasons to come.”

Gerjo Bommeljé, Tuba 2013

Middelburg, The Netherlands

“I attended the Rockford Drum Major Camp in 2011. My experience there was beyond fantastic and made me want to audition for the 2012 Regiment, and I have been a completely different person ever since. Coming back to this group of so many people with one common goal is a magical and truly wonderful experience. The Regiment is my home.”

Alex Liddell, Tuba 2012 & 2014

Rockford, Ill.

“Being apart of Phantom Regiment has changed my life for the better. Regiment is not only a drum corps to me it is a phamily, united with brothers and sisters alike. In this organization I learned how to grow up and become a better me. Every memory and friendship that I have had with the Regiment will stay with me for the rest of my life. I am truly thankful for everything Regiment has taught me and will always consider this corps my home, my Phamily.”

Ashley Rene, Color Guard 2011-13

Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

Of course, besides the crown jewel of the organization, the drum & bugle corps, we’ve added many other programs. Here’s an email we received from a student that attended one of our educational camps:

The color guard camp I attended was one of the most life-changing events for me. I loved every single bit of that camp even though I was behind in experience compared to most of the campers there.

I loved how the Phantom Regiment was really a tight-knit family and every one of the members was extremely polite to all of the campers. Another thing I really liked about the camp was that even though it was a lot of work, I wouldn’t mind working that hard for even more.

I pretty much have my heart set on Phantom because of the camp.

Sarah K.
Color Guard Camp Attendee

It’s truly wonderful to see the positive effects our organization has on so many young people. These represent just a few of the thousands of students lives we have the opportunity to positively impact again this year. We have a terrific staff and volunteer base that help provide this great experience. But it s truly our donor base that provides us the ability to make all this happen.

As the end of the year approaches, I hope you consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help continue the success of this organization and all of the young people that participate in our programs. Any amount is greatly appreciated! *** Donate to our End of Year Campaign Now ***

Thank you for your continued support!


Rick Valenzuela

Executive Director

From my family, and my extended phamily…
we wish you a very happy, safe and prosperous New Year!

(Stanley Cup at the Rockford Ice Hogs Game)