Daley Debutantes Baton & Drum Corps
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History of the Daley Debutantes Baton & Drum Corps

60+ Years of Champions .......
The History of the
Daley Debutantes Baton & Drum Corps


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         After more than 1,000 parades and more than 94 world, national, and state titles, the World Champion Daley Debutantes Baton and Drum Corps celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2005.  Founded in 1955, by Sherry Daley, the Debs made their first public appearance in the West Allis Fourth of July Parade.  Since then, the 114-plus members of the Corps have become a familiar sight at Chicago’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Fourth of July, Veterans Day, Memorial Day, and Christmas parades, as well as the South Shore Water Frolic, St. Francis Days, Irish Fest, West Allis Western Days, Wisconsin State Fair, and Milwaukee’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the Southeastern Wisconsin area.  Today, the Daley Debutantes are the oldest, largest, and most celebrated baton corps in Wisconsin.

 

            Years of hard work and a tradition of excellence have advanced the reputation of the Daley Debutantes throughout the United States and Europe.  Each year since 1962, with the exception of 1999 and 2003, the Corps has performed in Chicago’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, capturing in excess of 22 parade corps awards and trophies.  In 1988, the Corps won the Mayor Richard J Daley trophy for being the outstanding unit in the parade, defeating nearly 200 entries from four states and Ireland.

 

In addition to parade performances, the Daley Debutantes twirlers have been asked to perform at many national events.  The twirlers have made two appearances at the annual Kick-Off Classic football halftime show at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ in 1988 and 1995.  On January 1, 1989, team members participated in the Sugar Bowl pre-game show in New Orleans, LA and on December 31, 1990, members of the Daley Debs winning teams and color guard were the only twirling teams who performed at the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, FL.

 

Other special performances include a parade/chase scene in the 1993 blockbuster film “The Fugitive” starring Harrison Ford and Tommie Lee Jones, halftime shows for Marquette University Basketball games and Milwaukee Bucks NBA basketball games, and huge corporate events for Quadgraphics Printing Company and Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co.’s National Convention.

 

Over the years, the Corps has been asked to perform in Spain, France, Russia, and Sweden and on cruise ships to Bermuda and the Bahamas.  However, the highlights of the group’s performance career were their appearances in the 1999 and 2003 St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Dublin, Ireland.  Both times, they dazzled the ¾ of a million spectators with their exciting music, flag, and twirling performances!

 

The Daley Debutantes Baton & Drum Corps has always participated in competitions at the local, state, national, and world levels.  Their winning tradition has culminated in 19 Grand World Parade Corps, 33 National Parade Corps, and 48 Wisconsin State Parade Corps wins.  Their most recent achievement is the 2005 Grand World Parade Corps Championship for Corps with Live Music at America’s Youth on Parade at the University of Notre Dame this past July.