Marquis of Granby celebrates 48th season with awards banquet

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By Madeline Christensen

Marquis of Granby Jr. Ancient Fyfe and Drum Corps held its annual Awards Banquet on Jan. 6 in Cook Hall at the First Congregational Church. The corps opened the evening by playing a short concert to over 100 attendees, including family members, instructors, alumni and past directors. The banquet is a special and beloved event. It’s an opportunity to celebrate the corps members’ many accomplishments and soak up the culture of a truly unique organization. It is also an exciting reunion for members who are in college, as well as for past directors, instructors and alumni.

All of the families contributed to the delicious dinner and seemingly endless desserts. Throughout the event, many thanks were presented by the Corps Director, Kim McCord. The Marquis could not exist without the support of its many devoted volunteers, tackling everything from uniforms to fundraising, to food and transportation needs. Tony and Anne Cappelli received a Special Parent Recognition award for their tireless efforts to provide the members with great food on the road and after parades.
Rank advancements and awards followed. Promoted to rank of Marching Recruit in 2017 were Nairobi Mouning and George Petersen. Promoted to Private (Flag Line): Pearce Boit, Brody Landheer, Ben Weber. Corporal: Allison Christensen, Luke Ranicar, Brayden Mandeville. Sergeant: Katherine Benoit, Evelyn Brooke, Shannon McCord. Sergeant Major: Lizzy Cappelli, Keith Seger. The highest rank a member can achieve during their years of service in the Marquis of Granby is the rank of Major. Noah Greer, Rebecca Kaczmarek, Rebecca McCord advanced to Major.
A number of corps members were recognized for their years of service. Sam Askew, Evelyn Brooke, Lizzie Cappelli, Shannon Leydon received a pewter mug for five years of service, and Rachel Abrahamson, Jessica Askew, Layne Cramer, Brittany Janzer, Helen Newman received a pewter plate for seven years of service with the Corps.
In 2017 the Marquis performed at over 20 separate venues in the northeast. A number of members were acknowledged for their outstanding performances and practice attendance. Allison Christensen had 100 percent attendance for the year. Corps members Sam Askew, Katherine Benoit, Noah Greer, Alyssa Groneman, Brittany Janzer, Rebecca Kaczmarek, Katrina McCord, Shannon McCord, Keith Seger had an attendance rate of above 90 percent. Members with such extraordinary attendance records receive their choice of a credit to their travel enrichment account, or a scholarship to fyfe and drum camp. In addition, Evelyn Brooke, Lizzie Cappelli, Rebecca McCord, Brayden Mandeville, Nick Rondeau were recognized for attendance above 80 percent.
Awards were also presented for accomplishments in other areas, which included Most Improved Marcher: George Petersen (Recruit), Most Improved Fyfer: Alyssa Groneman (Beginner) and Katherine Benoit and Shannon McCord (Playing Line), Most Improved Beginner Drummer: Brody Landheer and Most Improved Playing Line Drummer: Nick Rondeau.
The Jacky Award was given to honor the memory of Jacky Welsh, a Marquis member from East Granby who died in August of 2011. This award is voted on by the corps members and given to the person or persons who best exemplify the words used to describe Jacky such as: smart, witty, engaged, mature, confident, passionate, dedicated, quiet, respectful, considerate, caring and brave. This year’s recipient was Brittany Janzer.
The recipient of the Knight of Knipton award is also chosen by corps members’ vote, and is given to the new member who best exemplifies the corps values of a great attitude, overall contributions and willingness to act as an “Ambassador of the Corps.” The 2017 recipient was Nairobi Mouning.
In addition, the Marquis membership voted on its Junior Board Members. This year’s elected representatives are Noah Greer, Becca McCord, Rebecca Kaczmarek, and tied Brittany Janzer and Keith Seger.
The Marquis Director’s Award for 2017 for the first time was presented to two members. AJ Newman and Sam Askew were both recognized for exceptional dedication to the corps, leadership and being an excellent role model.
The final award presented was the Marquis Peacock Award, which recognizes long-standing commitment and support for the Marquis by an individual or organization in the community. This year’s recipient was the Corps’ beginner fyfe instructor, Jennifer Wick, herself an alumni of the Corps who has been teaching fyfers for many years.
This is an exciting time for The Marquis. The Corps added four new members in 2017, active membership now stands at 42. The Corps’ new website, created and maintained by its members, showcases its members and their participation in various events. And, there is an amazing trip coming up in August 2018, when they head to Scotland to soak up a different culture and to take part in an Edinburgh music and art festival.
The Marquis is generously supported by the community and would like to express its gratitude to the First Congregational Church, the Granby Community Fund and all the members of the community for their ongoing support. Membership in the Marquis of Granby Ancient Fyfe and Drum Corps is open to youth ages 9-21 from Granby and the surrounding towns. The corps invites anyone interested to attend their practice at the First Congregational Church on Wednesday evenings. For more information, visit