Having our origins in a Junior Corps that was formed in 1960, members reunited for a single Alumni performance for Manchester's Sesquicentennial celebration in 1995. One thing led to another and with member desire to keep it going, the Corps formally incorporated as a non-profit entity in 1996. In late 2006 and early 2007, a number of events redefined the Muchachos of the present and future.
Firstly, we applied to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to change our non-profit status to what is called a 501(c)(3) entity, which allows tax deductible contributions to our efforts. Prior to this (it was granted retroactive to September 2006), any donations to the Corps were not tax deductible by the donor. This was a requirement for our next goal, application to Drum Corps International (DCI) for membership as an All-Age Corps. This new category that DCI opened up would allow Corps that passed an evaluation of the legal and financial structure of the Corps, as well as a musical performance level, to exhibit at DCI competitions and even compete against other All-Age Corps if so desired. The Muchachos passed with flying colors and we were on our way. We opened the Spartans show in Nashua on July 3rd of 2007, and followed that with a spirited performance at our own show in Manchester on July 15th.
Our new non-profit status was granted based on our goal to provide music education, team work, and membership in an alternative environment for anyone between the ages of 14 and "retirement." To meet that goal, our new non-Affiliated Board of Directors directed that the profits of our show be allocated to the education mission. We now have an instructional staff with over 100 years of cumulative experience in teaching music and color guard, as well as having many years of Drum Corps leadership.
We have grown to over 50 members and are in great demand for performances throughout New England and New York State. Although many organizers provide remuneration for performances, the Muchachos take greater satisfaction from our "pro bono" activities. We have in recent years performed for the Youth Development Facility (YDC), the Shriners' Burn Unit, Camp Fatima Exceptional Children's week, Jerry Lewis telethon, Veteran's hospital, Manchester holiday parades, Veteran's Cemetery Taps, Echo Taps, County home, and others.
This year's show, "Pictures of Spain," is our fourth year of performing in DCI field exhibitions, and in 2009, we added a Drum Corps Associates (DCA) show in Kingston, NY, to our resume. Once again, our performance was extremely well received and a Drum Corps World published a review of the show that stated that "The Muchachos rocked the house."
You, too, can be a part of this as we are always accepting new students/members who are at least 14 years of age. We have an excellent mix of ages through 65+ at this time. We especially welcome those with previous Drum Corps experience who can assist in our education activities. We need more to reach additional people who have a desire, but no avenue, to learn the life long benefits of Drum Corps participation.
Please feel free to contact me directly with any questions you may have about membership and for any other information about the Muchachos. The best phone numbers to get me at are 603-674-7650 during the day and most evenings at 603-228-3971. You can also contact us through our web form on the Contact Us page.
It's a great time to be a Muchacho. (Noel Taylor, 2001)