The Washington High School marching band will have a new look next fall after the school board approved the purchase of uniforms.
The board voted Wednesday night to accept the low bid of $135,202.50 from Stanbury Uniforms.
The funding will be shared between the district and the Band Boosters. The district budgeted $100,000 of its share, the band boosters have committed $30,000 and $1,200 will come from the athletic budget.
The board also agreed to the full payment at the time of order option to receive a 3 percent discount. A total of 225 sets will be ordered.
Superintendent Dr. Lori VanLeer said new uniforms don’t come cheaply, but noted the current uniforms are 12 years old.
“When you divide the cost over 12 years it’s not that bad,” she said. “The band will look very sharp in these new uniforms.”
Activities Director Bill Deckelman and Band Director Ryan Lovell were both at the meeting to model sample uniforms.
A Request for Proposals (RFP) was opened on Aug. 20 for the band uniforms. Proposals included individual costs for each piece of the uniform.
The other bidder was DeMoulin Bros. & Co. That bid came in at $141,205.50.
Lovell noted the high school has used Stanbury in the past. He also said 12 years for a uniform is well beyond the “life” of a uniform and many high school bands do not use their uniforms that long.
Deckelman added the band tries to keep upfront costs for a band member as low as possible at $200 or less, while other schools have fees in excess of $600.
Board member Bob Oreskovic asked what will happen to the old uniforms.
Deckelman said there are companies that make pillows out of the uniforms and then sell them to the students as a keepsake. Another option is to sell them as surplus property.
Once ordered, the new uniforms should be ready in about seven months, possibly in time for band members to wear them when they perform at Disney in May.