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Home > Spotlight > Farmers Insurance Supports Rose Parade Bands
2010 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade Coverage

Farmers Insurance drums up support to make Rose Parade dreams come true

Company holds special events in band hometowns across the USA

DECEMBER 17, 2009 — The Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year's Day offers a superstar moment for marching band students. With a live audience of nearly 1 million people, the parade delivers a dream come true that even the most popular rock stars rarely experience.

The Farmers ExtraordinAIR balloon appeared at several fundraising events for bands marching in the 2010 Rose Parade. But moving an entire marching band to the big stage in Pasadena takes a lot of money, and Farmers Insurance Group of Companies has stepped in to help.

To celebrate its more than 50 years of Rose Parade participation, Farmers has expanded its role as Official Insurance Sponsor to also become the "Official Supporter of Rose Parade Bands." Farmers agents, district managers and employees from across the country have helped bands raise money to offset their travel expenses to Pasadena.

Farmers quietly began increasing its support of marching bands a year ago, and its commitment will become more visible when the company leads the 2010 parade with its float entry titled "Salute to the Bands." (See related story: Float honoring marching bands to lead 2010 Rose Parade.)

Fundraising Kick-Start
The 2010 Rose Parade bands come from big cities and small towns from coast to coast and even Guatemala. The parade features a total of 21 bands, including six units that have "permanent" spots in the parade such as the Marine Band, the Salvation Army Band and the bands representing the teams playing in the Rose Bowl Game.

Official Supporter of Rose Parade Bands To help get band members and their equipment to Pasadena, Farmers donated $500 to each of the high school bands to kick off their year-long fundraising efforts.

January 1 will be the culmination of a full year of activity that started with an initial donation from Farmers and continued with special events tailored to the local communities.

Nebraska Returns
For the first time in 16 years, the Rose Parade lineup includes a high school band from Nebraska: the Millard West High School Band. To assist the Wildcat Band's fundraising efforts, Farmers brought its "ExtraordinAIR" hot air balloon to Omaha, where Farmers agent John Klopp helped raise $3,000 in two days.

The Nebraska state office donated $500 to the band and arranged to have a Farmers customer care vehicle at a Millard West home football game to drum up local contributions. The office also collected and delivered moving boxes to the school so the band wouldn't have to purchase boxes to ship uniforms and small instruments to California.

"Farmers is proud that these young men and women are headed to Pasadena to represent our state in the Rose Parade," said John Lucido, Farmers Insurance state executive director in Nebraska.

Missouri Raffle
Fundraising efforts in Missouri have a tropical feel. Farmers personnel are helping the Webb City Cardinal Pride Band raffle a chance to win a 7-day Caribbean cruise. All donations go to the band and Farmers will match donations up to $1,000. Farmers is also helping with the Webb City band concert on December 22, 2009 as a last-push fundraiser.

Ohio Quadruple Play
The state of Ohio has the unusual distinction of sending four bands to the Rose Parade this year, which increased from three when the Ohio State Buckeyes earned an invitation to play in the Rose Bowl Game. The Buckeyes will now join marching bands from Pickerington Central High School, Ohio University, and the Ohio State School for the Blind.

Farmers Insurance Group of Companies logo In one day, Farmers helped support two of the Ohio bands. First, the inspiring Ohio State School for the Blind Marching Band was a featured guest at the Farmers Ohio Legislative Conference held at the Ohio State Capitol. Then, the ExtraordinAIR hot air balloon landed at Pickerington Central High School for a fundraiser that earned $1,200 for the band.

"This was the single greatest community event I have been involved with for Farmers in 20 years," said Janet Kerwood, a consultant for Farmers in Ohio.

Tennessee Flight
Farmers agents and employees in Tennessee helped dreams take flight for the Soddy Daisy High School Band. Selling donated pizza and supporter buttons, plus accepting donations for ExtraordinAIR balloon rides for more than 100 people, the Farmers group raised more than $1,100 in two hours.

"This was a great way to show the community the heights we'll go to in support of these young musicians," said Betsy Nealon, Tennessee state executive director.

Washington Tournament
Working with the Washington state office, Farmers agent Brian Horch orchestrated a dodgeball tournament called "Dodge for Roses." The event raised $3,900 to move the South Kitsap High School Band closer to its fundraising goal.

California Fun Run
Agent Soly Asmar and district manager Tim Roe have been involved with the Glendora Tartan Band. The school held a Run for the Roses event, complete with a 2k/5k run and antique car show. Farmers displayed its 1928 Cadillac Phaeton in the car show, and the "ExtraordinAir" balloon provided rides to help raise funds.

Also in California, Farmers is lending support to the the Los Angeles Unified School Disrict band by covering the cost of renting a box truck to transport instruments to Pasadena.

2010 Rose Parade Theme: A Cut Above The Rest "On behalf of the students and staff of the LAUSD All District High School Honor Band, we would like to thank Farmers Insurance for thinking about ways to assist our program," said LAUSD Band Director Tony White.

Texas Big Results
Fundraising efforts were Texas-sized in Conroe, with 14 organized events in support of the Conroe High School Tiger Band. Events including a BBQ, car wash, garage sale, raffle, rose sale, golf tournament and ExtraordinAIR rides raised a whopping $130,587.

Even further, the Farmers team will literally deliver on its promise to help make Rose Parade dreams a reality by carrying the Conroe Band's instruments in a caravan of Farmers vehicles from Conroe to Pasadena.

Tune In
The 2010 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade begins at 8:00 AM (Pacific) on Friday, January 1. The parade will be broadcast on ABC, Hallmark Channel, HGTV, KTLA, NBC, RFD-TV, Travel Channel and Univision.

Images and source material courtesy of Farmers Insurance Group of Companies.

Copyright 2009 All rights reserved. This material may not be published or redistributed without permission.

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