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Funding Restored: Sioux Falls Municipal Band to play on

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 9:33 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) -A century-old music group will continue on in Sioux Falls. The Sioux Falls Municipal Band was originally left out of the city’s 2021 budget. However, after support from the community and city councilors, that’s changed.

The Sioux Falls Municipal Band has a long history dating back to 1919. The band survived the great depression, along with several wars. And now band members look forward to playing for at least another year.

“Well, I was very excited. You know I was worried this was the end of the band,” said Bandmaster Christopher Hill.

$112,000 was put back into the 2021 city budget to support the Sioux Falls Municipal Band. That funding was initially cut from the budget.

The band is made up of professional musicians who usually perform around 30 times a year.

“We needed the funding to keep the band going, you know get the musicians out there, buy new arrangements that we like to use, keep the instruments that we have in tip-top shape,” said Hill.

Hill has been a part of the Sioux Falls Municipal Band for over 2 decades.

“The band is not only entertainment for a cross-section of the community. We serve those who served. We serve our military veterans. We go to retirement communities, senior centers, nursing homes,” said Hill.

City councilors Curt Soehl and Greg Neitzert are also working to form a band task force.

“We want community leaders, we want people from the band, people from city hall all involved in the discussion about what is the appropriate use of the band. At least a five to 10 year look on how we structure it going forward,” said Soehl.

That way the municipal band can perform on for years to come.

“It’s a gem, it’s a jewel of our community that people really enjoy and that’s why I’m happy that it’s back in for at least one more year with the current funding and in the future I expect the band to be around for 100 more years,” said Soehl.

Councilors Soehl and Neitzert hope to have the task force formed within the next 30 days.

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