LINDSBORG — The Smoky Valley High School band isn’t snoozing through fundraising opportunities. This year, the group is selling something new — mattresses.

The first annual mattress sale will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 30 at the high school to raise funds for the band’s upcoming trip to Denver. The sale is facilitated by Custom Fundraising Solutions, an organization based in Ohio.

“It sounded a little strange to me at first, but CFS has been working with area music departments for several years now with great success. A major benefit for us is that there is no risk on our behalf,” explained Adam Keller, USD 400 director of bands. “We don’t pay up front for this fundraiser. Our biggest responsibility for this event is spreading the word and encouraging people to come check out our event.”

CFS will bring in all the mattresses and equipment to set up the Smoky Valley High School commons to look like a mattress showroom — complete with name brand beds and adjustable bases in a variety of sizes and prices. The organization also accepts all forms of payment and will put together a payment plan, or offer delivery and haul away services.

The music department, parents and students will be there throughout the day grilling hot dogs and promoting the event with mattress costumes and more.

“As with anything, the more a student and parent has invested — be it time, effort, money, whatever — the more they will care about what they are doing and the better the follow-through will be,” Keller explained. “We know money is tight for most people and to just ask them to write a several hundred dollar check is impolite and irresponsible. We want all of our talented musicians to participate in the trips so we want to give students and parents as much of a head start on the financial side as we can.”

In addition to the mattress sale, the department will host other annual fundraisers, like the shrimp boil tailgate on Sept. 15 at Bethany College’s Anderson Stadium and the Big Band Swing Dance.

The high school band kicked off their marching season with a performance at the Kansas State Fair on Sept. 13. Musical groups at Smoky Valley High School are all looking forward to a number of upcoming performances to prepare for festival season this spring.

The band plays for all the home varsity football and basketball games and the symphonic band, string orchestra, and symphony orchestra will perform their first concert on Sept. 21. The choir debuts Oct. 19 with an event held at Bethany College and the jazz band will have their first performance at the McPherson College Jazz Festival Nov. 2. 

Keller explained that keeping students performing is key to high achievement.

“Our classes are performance based. Keeping a steady and lively performance pace helps keep our rehearsals focused and objective-oriented,” Keller said. “It is certainly hard to perfect music when we perform this often, but it does put a little more pressure on the students to practice knowing that a performance is always around the corner.”

Contact Cheyenne Derksen Schroeder by email at cderksen@mcphersonsentinel.com or follow her on Twitter at @MacSentinel.