BKDBC Volunteer Sign-Up

We could not exist without the tireless effort of our many volunteers – people just like you. Team up with other friends, fans, and alumni.  Volunteering will give you the opportunity to be a close observer of the development of a championship team.

How do you volunteer?

Take a look at our Volunteer Opportunities page and find something that you can help with. These often have online signups so use those when available. If you don’t necessarily see something but have a suggestion to offer; we would be glad to hear that. Any questions or to express your interest in volunteering, please contact us at volunteer@ascendperformingarts.org and we’ll get back to you promptly.


Note – For the safety of all of our participants, volunteers, staff, we are requiring everyone at our in-person camps and clinics to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

When and how can you help?

We have some sort of activity happening basically year round with various needs.  Below, we’ll show you our typical needs somewhat chronologically.  FAQs and full descriptions can be found further down the page and in the document list on the right of this page.
  1. When to Help
    1. Denver Monthly Camp Volunteers (November – April)
    2. Denver Pre-Tour Camp Volunteers (May – Mid-June)
    3. National Tour Volunteers (Mid-June – Mid-August)
    4. Ad-Hoc Volunteers (Any time of year)
  2. How to Help/Job Descriptions
    1. Blue Knights Kitchen Crew
    2. Medical Team
    3. Transportation Team
    4. Uniform Team
    5. Social Media Team
    6. BK Marketplace Team
    7. Tour Management Team

Denver Monthly Camp Volunteers (November – April)

One weekend a month we will take over a local school facility for members to audition and/or rehearse.  These camps run from about 6pm Friday to mid-afternoon on Sunday.  The list below shows the basic jobs that need to be performed at each camp and an idea of how many people are needed.  Most do not require any special qualifications.  These camps are a great opportunity for parents of prospective and returning and local and non-local members to come along and experience the corps too.  If you wish to save the expense of a rental car and local hotel room, you are welcome to bring your bedroll and bunk in the volunteer sleeping quarters during the weekend. As long as you have signed up as a full volunteer we will house and feed you and provide airport shuttle service.  Please don’t just show up unannounced expecting to be housed or transported as space is limited.  Sign up first and communicate with the volunteer coordinator!.  Drop-in volunteers are more than welcome, but we can’t necessarily house you.  Work shifts are about 4-hours each.  Online volunteer signups will be posted about a month prior to a particular camp.
  • Shop for food and supplies (Sam’s Club, King Soopers, …) [1-2 people]
  • Load supply truck with food and equipment at corps hall and drive to the housing site [2-3 people]
  • Unload supplies at the housing site [2-3 people]
  • Kitchen Crew – Assist the Head Cook to prepare and serve four meals per day (up to 200 per meal) [4 to 10 people per meal]
  • Provide medical assistance to sick or injured members and staff [1 person with medical qualifications]
  • Make van airport shuttle runs for incoming and departing members and staff [2 people]
  • Handle merchandise/souvenir sales on Sunday [1 – 2 people]
  • Help with uniform fittings and possibly alterations.  [2-4 people at Feb. – Apr. camps]
  • Pack up after last meal [3-4 people]
  • Top to bottom cleaning of the kitchen [3-4 people]
  • Drive supply truck back to corps hall and unload [2-3 people]

↑Back to Table of Contents↑


Denver Pre-Tour Camp Volunteers (mid-May to mid-June)

Members arrive and move in for full time rehearsals in the Denver area.  Our hope is to maintain a fixed housing site (Denver Coliseum) for most of the time prior to tour, but may move to another site or two during the last week. Tasks are very similar to a weekend camp – only the duration is closer to 30 days instead of 3 and meals are now prepared in our food trailer.  We really need a great deal of volunteer support from non-parents and non-locals during pre-tour.  Fun fact: While our corps is headquartered in the Denver area, only about 20% of our members live in Colorado.  Similar to the monthly camps, this is a great opportunity for parents of local and non-local members to come along and experience the corps too.  If you wish to save the expense of a rental car and local hotel room, you are welcome to bring your bedroll and bunk in the volunteer sleeping quarters during the weekend.  As long as you have signed up as a volunteer full volunteer we will house and feed you and provide airport shuttle service.  Please don’t just show up unannounced expecting to be housed or transported as space is limited.  Sign up first and communicate with the volunteer coordinator!.  Drop-in volunteers are more than welcome, but we can’t necessarily house you.  Work shifts are about 4-hours each.  Online volunteer signups will be posted about a month prior to move-ins.
  • Shop for food and supplies (Sam’s Club, King Soopers, …) [1-2 people]
  • Pre tour prep and load of food trailer [6 people for about 6 hours]
  • Kitchen Crew – Assist the Head Cook to prepare and serve four meals per day (up to 200 per meal) [4 people per meal]
  • Provide medical assistance to sick or injured members and staff [1 person with medical qualifications]
  • Make van airport shuttle runs for incoming and departing members and staff [2 people]
  • Make van food and supply runs [1 person every couple of days]
  • Help stock reload the food trailer after food deliveries [4-6 people about one a week]
  • Help with uniform fittings and possibly alterations.  [2-4 people once or twice a week]

↑Back to Table of Contents↑


National Tour Volunteers (mid-June to mid-August)

Life on the road starts in earnest in mid-June in roughly two halves – a southwest/western/nothwest tour loop back to Denver and Drums Along the Rockies, and an southern/eastern/midwest tour loop culminating in DCI championships in Indianapolis, IN followed by a bee line back to Denver.  We need a great deal of volunteer help during this period.  For any newbies to the activity our recommendation is that you limit your time on tour to one week or less.  No sugar coating here.  It is hard and relentless work, but oh so rewarding.   This is a great time for non-Denver area folks to come on board and help out as we swing through your region.  Please note that traveling on the road for tour can be physically and mentally demanding with the majority of sleep taking place on a bus or in a van and a fair amount of physical labor involved for some positions. Please be sure to consider this when volunteering for tour. If you have concerns about tour, we would still love to have you volunteer locally when the Blue Knights are in your area.

As long as you have signed up as a full volunteer we will house, feed, and transport you including airport shuttle service.  Please don’t just show up unannounced expecting to be housed or transported as space is limited.  Sign up first and communicate with the volunteer coordinator!.  Note: That we cannot do airport shuttles at every housing site. Also Note: That housing sites can be an hour or more drive from show sites and transportation hubs.  Drop-in volunteers are more than welcome at our housing sites to help during the day, but we can’t necessarily house or shuttle you.  No online volunteer signups are available at this time (but that could change).  In the meantime we ask that you contact the volunteer coordinator if you are interested.
  • Kitchen Crew – Assist the Head Cook to prepare and serve four meals per day (up to 200 per meal) [4-6 people per meal]
  • Make van airport shuttle and errand runs and transport volunteers and admins [4 people]
  • Help with uniform repairs and possibly alterations.  [1-2 people once or twice during tour]
  • Handle merchandise/souvenir inventory and sales at all events [2-4 people]
  • Uniform washing (Dates TBD) [6 people for about 5 hours @ each washing]
  • Social Media [# people vary]
  • Tour Admins (vetted through Director and Tour Manager) [2-4 people]

↑Back to Table of Contents↑


Denver AdHoc Volunteers (any time of year)

Volunteer request postings for these type items will made about two weeks prior to the event.
  • Post tour unload and winterization of food trailer [6 people for about 4 hours]
  • Warehouse cleaning and organizing [8-10 people for about 8 hours]
  • Vehicle repairs [varies]
  • Warehouse repairs [varies]
  • Prop construction [varies]
  • Pre tour prep and load of food trailer [6 people for about 6 hours]
  • Uniform washing (mid-tour and post-tour) [6 people for about 5 hours @ each washing]
  • Merchandise sales at events [2-4 people per event]
  • … and many other items like these.

↑Back to Table of Contents↑


Job Descriptions:

Blue Knights Kitchen Crew

Can you slice, dice, dish out food, and clean up after meals? We typically serve the members, staff, management, and volunteers four healthy meals a day.  You don’t need much more experience than how to boil water, open cans, slice meat and vegetables, measure ingredients per recipe, spoon food onto the plate of a grateful corps member, and wash dishes.  Don’t have that experience?  We will gladly help you develop it.

Medical Team

Are you in the medical field? Medical personnel are needed to ensure the physical well being of the members, staff, management, and volunteers while touring the country.

  • RN or similar – The Blue Knights are looking for licensed Registered Nurses with at least two years of current Medical/Surgical, Intensive Care Unit, or Emergency Room experience.
  • Sports Medicine or similar – The Blue Knights are also looking for Sports Medicine, Physical Therapists, Physicians, and other licensed healthcare professionals who may be interested in volunteering over the summer.
If you fit this description (or you know someone who does), please send qualifications and resume along with any questions to volunteer@ascendperformingarts.org.

Transportation Team

Do you have a Commercial Drivers License (CDL)? Do you have a passenger endorsement? We are looking for drivers for our busses and tractor trailer trucks during our summer tour.  Don’t have a CDL?  We also need drivers for our volunteer and staff vans on the road both on tour and at local camps.

Uniform Team

Do you have basic sewing skills? You can help our Blue Knights look sharp with uniforms through minor care and maintenance of before and during our Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps.  We also need several washing a season as uniforms get smelly and dirty for some reason.

Social Media Team

We need a select group of individuals to contribute photos, videos, and stories to our social media coordinator.  These items will reflect daily corps life, provide some fun or inspiration, and be promotional of the corps.  The coordinator will collect and screen for privacy and copyright violations and prepare the social media postings.  Team members normally do this as a side activity to their “normal” corps function.

Blue Knights Marketplace Team

Do you like engaging with people? Do you have retail experience? Selling Blue Knights gear is an important part of supporting the Blue Knights. The Blue Knights Marketplace provides much-needed financial support to the Blue Knights through the sale of popular merchandise at each contest during the Blue Knights tours. Typically, the Blue Knights personnel manage inventory, set-up the merchandise trailer before each event, engage with customers, fans, family, and alumni during the contest and ensure the operation is closed down and everything is accounted for at the end of each event.

Tour Management Team

Are you a problem-solver? The Blue Knights need volunteers who can join us on tour as assistants for the Tour Admin Team with many day-to-day tasks, projects and requests that are vital to the successful operation of the Blue Knights.  You will have to be vetted through our Corps Director and possibly our Tour Manager.

↑Back to Table of Contents↑

For more information, contact the Ascend Performing Arts Volunteer Coordinator:
Scroll to Top

Want to Stay up to Date?

Sign up for our newsletter, the Knightly Newsbrief, to stay up to date with Ascend and all things Blue Knights. 

Email Address(Required)
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Ken Adams

KEN ADAMS

Mark Arnold is one of the longest-serving Directors in Drum Corps International, serving as Executive Director of the Blue Knights Drum & Bugle Corps since 1985 and as CEO of Ascend Performing Arts since 2010.

Under his leadership the Blue Knights organization has developed into one of the premier Drum and Bugle Corps in the history of the activity, recognized Internationally for excellence and innovation in the performing arts. Through the years the Blue Knights has expanded its programing and now serves thousands of young musicians and performers annually in multiple performing ensembles, events and educational programs under the umbrella of the Ascend Performing Arts.

In addition to shaping the course of Ascend Performing Arts, Mark also has played an integral role in the ongoing development and successes of Drum Corps International as a collective. He served as chairman of the DCI Board of Directors in 1994 and again from 2008 to 2013. Mark was honored as Corps Director of the Year in 2004, and was the inaugural recipient of the George Bonfiglio Chairman’s Award at the 2012 DCI World Championships, which is given to an individual each year who demonstrates extraordinary leadership and service on behalf of DCI and its performing drum corps.  Mark was inducted into the DCI Hall of Fame in 2014 and the Blue Knights Hall of Fame in 2019.

Prior to his position with the Blue Knights, Mark was the Assistant Director of the Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps from 1978 through 1983, serving alongside Director Jim Jones, one of the founders of Drum Corps International and an inaugural member of the DCI Hall of Fame.  Mr. Arnold has a degree in Music Education from the University of Wyoming and taught High School Music in Wyoming and Nebraska from 1979 through 1985.
Mark Arnold

MARK ARNOLD

Scott Factor has served on the Ascend Performing Arts Board from 2012 to 2018 as a voting member in various positions including Vice-Chairman. Since 2019 my role has been in an Advisory position.

Outside of Ascend Performing Arts i am Senior Account Executive for Baxter HealthCare.
Scott Factor

SCOTT FACTOR

I am currently an Ascend Board Member-at-Large.  I have been a volunteer with the Blue Knights since 2013.  I have been serving on the BoD since 2019.  I retired from the United States Postal Service in 2010.  Although I have never marched drum corps I am an avid fan of the activity and thoroughly support our members in any way that I can.  “We Go On”!!! 

Neil Corvino

NEIL CORVINO

Board member Kathy Black is an attorney in New Mexico practicing as a full-time litigator focused on employment and civil rights defense. She came to the law as a second career after twenty-five years in high tech with NCR Corporation, doing everything from operating systems programming to Vice President positions in engineering, customer services, and sales. She earned her JD from Lewis & Clark Law School and her BA from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Ms. Black is active as a percussionist in the Albuquerque area. Way back in 1978 she marched with the Guardsmen, including at DCI Finals in Denver.  After many years of being just a drum corps fan, she was elected to the Drum Corps International Board of Directors in January 2016 and served on that board until January 2022, including three years as chair. 

Kathy Black

KATHY BLACK

Bryant’s path to the Ascend Board of Directors, which began in 2021 as a member-at-large, traces back to his childhood. Watching the Reading Buccaneers senior drum corps practice near his grandparents’ home ignited a lifelong passion, and a student of all thing’s percussion.

Years later a family move to Colorado provided Bryant with a platform to display his passion, both on the stage with the nationally acclaimed Green Earth Percussion Ensemble and on the field as a snare drummer with the Blue Knights Drum & Bugle Corps until his age-out year in 1984.

In his professional career as the Senior Director of Strategic Accounts at Yokohama Tire Co., Bryant credits the principles instilled by the marching arts and years on tour for his success. On a personal level, the arts played an even larger role, where Bryant met his wife, Stephanie. The Rankin’s currently make their home in South Carolina, enjoying time with their grown children, two incredible grandchildren, and their beloved brown lab, Zoey.
Bryant Rankin

BRYANT RANKIN

Retired, Director, Office of Research and Analysis, Colorado Department of Revenue Ms. Archibeque served 26 years in the area of statistical analysis for the Colorado Department of Revenue and Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. Her skills in this area assist the board in developing a strategy for statistical analysis in the area of program evaluation. She has also been a significant volunteer managing and working with volunteers for the organization and will assist the board in understanding the complex nature of the organization. Her personal experiences as a minority and female can inform and promote a more inclusive environment and agenda for the projects that the board supports.

Janet Archibeque

JANET ARCHIBEQUE

Rob Batchelder was appointed to the Ascend Performing Arts Board of Directors in May 2023, and currently serves as Vice Chair. As a member of the Senior Foreign Service, Rob has represented the United States overseas in India, Poland, Germany, Argentina, Nicaragua, Jamaica, and Namibia during a diplomatic career spanning nearly 30 years. He currently serves as Managing Director for Visa Services in the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs in Washington, DC. Rob marched in the Blue Knights hornline in 1987 and 1988, and he was Drum Major in 1989. He and his family live in Alexandria, Virginia, but his heart still yearns for Colorado.

Rob Batchelder

Rob BATCHELDER