© Gale Gatto
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Blue Knights perform in Bahrain with an Evergreen participant

Written by Staff Editor on .

This past week the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps sent an ensemble overseas for a historic trip that marked the first time an American drum corps has performed in the Middle East. The 7,600-mile journey brought more than 100 performers and staff members to the Persian Gulf where they entertained as part of the opening ceremonies of the Formula One Bahrain Grand Prix.  

With a population of approximately 1.4 million, Bahrain is a small island nation between the Qatar peninsula and the northeastern coast of Saudi Arabia.

Falling in close proximity to the WGI World Championships, the Blue Knights formed their Bahrain ensemble with a variety of current and alumni performers who have diverse marching music backgrounds and experience.  

One of the participants – Andrew Brickman – is a graduate of Evergreen High School and is attending CU Boulder.  Andrew (photo right) toured for two years with the Blue Knights as well as for two years in the Blue Knights Percussion Ensemble, completing his marching career with the Knights in 2016.

Makeup of the Blue Knights' Bahrain ensemble:

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Cuba - Part Two – Tourism in Trinidad

Written by Linda Kirkpatrick on .

We travel from Havana to Trinidad in a collective taxi with another couple, squeezing four adult passengers and four suitcases into a modestly-sized “modern” car, which means something newer than 1959, ours perhaps just 40 years old. It takes three men pushing the vehicle to get it started, and then we are off at 8:30 on a Saturday morning.

The 1950s (and older) cars are ubiquitous, making up about 60% of the vehicles we see. Some are truly spectacular.

Billboards with photos of Fidel and Raul Castro are frequent sights, as are slogans about the benefits of Socialism.  

Few people have cars, so traffic on the main highway is very very light by our standards. About 30 miles into the trip, the taxi exits onto a dirt road leading back into the densely treed, jungle-like area. We can’t help but wonder if we might be robbed, but it is just a matter of filling the gas tank with black market gasoline, using a funnel. The fumes remain prominent, at least for the person sitting immediately behind the driver with gasoline on his hands. He proves to be a safe and conscientious motorist who pulls over to accept a cell phone call, as it is illegal to talk or text on a cell phone while driving.

The trip costs $120 – $30 per person – up 50% from the 2016 tour book which quoted $80 – a sign that things are changing quickly. We learned in advance this is the standard rate for the route. A modern bus, which takes 6 hours, is an alternative at about $20 per person but requires advance reservations of several days.

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Meet Cindy Lempke

Written by Anne Vickstrom on .

Cindy Lempke has found the perfect career for herself. As Director of Corporate Communications for AIMCO, this know-how-to-communicate woman is in the right field for what just comes naturally.

“I’ve been in communications or public relations my entire career,” said the Williamsport, Pennsylvania native. After studying at Dickinson College, so near home, she was hired to work in Harrisburg only two weeks after completing her courses, also so near home. “I worked there until my first husband and I moved here.”

The couple had “been fortunate to travel to Colorado. Aspen was our first introduction. Each time we came, we would add more to our itinerary to discover more about Colorado. Eventually, we realized we wanted to live in this state.” And so they arrived in 2002 and since then, “I’ve never wanted to be anywhere else.”

Being that communicative type, Cindy “had a chance to volunteer on a political campaign. I was told about a position with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment as Director of Policy, External Affairs and Planning. I was in communication and lobbying,” Cindy said, rolling her eyes. “I was brand new to Colorado and suddenly I found myself at the capitol. Most people down there have a lot of connections; I didn’t know anyone. But I benefitted from that. I wanted to work on both sides of the aisle. I met a lot of wonderful people.”