A sweet treat helps keep the music playing for youngsters in the Hermosa Beach Youth Music program.
Dependent on outside funds, HBYM holds ice cream sandwich fundraisers monthly.
Tuesday's fundraiser is extra special: HBYM and Handel's Ice Cream & Yogurt will be all about the custom flavor BANDelicious, a special flavor created by HBYM saxophone player Caleigh McPhail who basically blended her favorite ice cream flavors with sundae add-ons for what she cleverly called S'More Music.
BANDelicious, which consists of brownie chunks and marshmallows swirled in vanilla and chocolate ice cream, will make its debut and be available Tuesday from 2:45 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. for $3 a piece at Hermosa Valley School. Each ice cream sandwich is made to order and individually wrapped, said HBYM's public relations volunteer Candy Ayllon-McPhail.
The name BANDelicious came to be because HBYM's ice cream supplier Handel's Homemade Ice Cream & Yogurt, rated #1 in the 3rd edition of National Geographic's 10 Best of Everything, An Ultimate Guide for Travelers, had already used the name S'Mores for one of its flavors.
Ayllon-McPhail, who came up with the ice cream sandwich fundraiser, told Patch that from more than 20 "very creative entries from the band kids," the owners of Handel's Redondo Beach shop, the Danyliks, "loved all their ideas" and "chose the flavor that would work well with ice cream sandwiches."
HBYM depends on contributions from outside its ranks. The group was founded eight years ago after the Hermosa Beach City School District eliminated the music program due to budget issues, relying on school district funds and donations to cover its costs.
Then, last summer, HBSD told HBYM it would not be able to contribute any money to the music program, so parents and those concerned made HBYM a non-profit and geared up to raise funds.
Ken Harrison, who leads the brass, woodwind and percussion band of 4th through 8th graders which is split into two groups by grade, told the Beach Reporter that if HBYM did not exist, its members would be left with only private lessons, which would not give them the experience of playing in a group.
To support itself, HBYM plans to begin holding a once-a-month "I'm With the Band Day" at Paisanos Pizza & Pasta through which 25 percent of the day's sale is donated to HBYM, said Ayllon-McPhail.
HBYM is also planning a kids' golf fundraiser in April at The Lakes in El Segundo, with Good Swings Can Happen Junior Golf Academy, known for holding great summer camps.
"Kids get to try out a great sport, one that teaches patience, sportsmanship, and mental discipline," said Ayllon-McPhail. "I think music and golf blend well together."
Last December, HBYM held a holiday wine tasting fundraiser at Uncorked The Wine Shop, with a silent auction that included hockey sticks used by Los Angeles Kings player Dustin Penner during the Stanley Cup playoffs. Penner's sticks were donated by Jake's Custom Skate Shop in El Segundo. In addition, several local businesses such as AR Salon, Skin Savvy and Omaggio Art Glass made generous donations for the HBYM silent auction, she said.
HBYM, which does not yet enter competitions, can be seen and heard around town performing at events such as the opening ceremonies for the Hermosa Beach Little League, the St. Patrick's Day Parade, the Spring Concert at St. Cross Church, the Hermosa Valley Halloween Carnival and the Christmas Tree Lighting on Pier Plaza.
The non-profit's ice cream sandwich fundraiser is held the first Tuesday of the month from 2:45 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. and is set to continue through June 11, according to the HBYM website.
The bands practice Tuesday and Thursday, with 4th and 5th graders slotted for 3:30 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. and 6th, 7th and 8th graders set for 4:40 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. Members are encouraged to come to both practices, however, making one a week is fine, per the website.