Bruce Hitchings Pipers Workshop Feb 23rd in Los Gatos

Bruce Hitchings returns to Los Gatos for a day long clinic. Lunch is provided during the day and for an additional $20 you can remain for dinner and tunes with the group. More information and contact information is available at the link.35833804_10216835084413254_9068920142397702144_n

bruce hitching_sue-burrs 2019


2018 Northern Branch AGM

Notice of Workshops,

Northern Branch Annual General Meeting (AGM)

& Northern Branch Awards Dinner

Date:          Saturday, January 26, 2019

Time:         4:30pm – 10:00pm (AGM starts at 6:00pm)

Location:   Harry’s Hofbrau

1909 El Camino Real

Redwood City, CA 94063

Workshops – 4:30 pm

Free to all Northern Branch solo members and rostered members of 2018 Northern Branch bands. Suggested donation of $10 for all other attendees.

Competing Pipers Association President—Glenn Brown

  • Discussion regarding the CPA system used in the UK.

WUSPBA Rep Training—Suzan Karayel

  • The WUSPBA Reps assist games organizers and ensure that all sanctioned contests operate smoothly and in compliance with the WUSPBA Contest Rules. Individuals who complete this or a similar training may be appointed to serve at Northern Branch games throughout the 2019 contest season, depending on need and availability. If you plan to attend, please RSVP to Suzan Karayel, Chief Rep for the Northern Branch, at


Northern Branch Annual General Meeting (AGM) – 6:00pm

Check in begins at 5:45pm

All 2018 WUSPBA Northern Branch members are invited and encouraged to attend the Northern Branch AGM.


  • Call to order, establish quorum
  • Officer introductions / reports
  • Review of WUSPBA Bylaw & Contest Rule changes effective 2019
  • Band Rosters: what bands need to know
  • Overview of Northern Branch events for the coming year
  • Election of Northern Branch Officers: President & Treasurer
    • Nominations may be submitted in advance to Secretary Wes Weber at, no later than Friday, January 11, 2019. Nominations will also be accepted from the floor.
  • New business—Amendments to Northern Branch By-Laws
    • Proposed amendments must be submitted in writing to Secretary Wes Weber at, no later than Friday, January 11, 2019.
  • Open comment period
  • Adjourn


Northern Branch 2018 Awards Dinner – 7:00pm

Presentation of awards to the 2018 Northern Branch Champions.

Dinner is on your own from Harry’s Hofbrau

  • 2018 Branch Champions—Free dinner with RSVP* by January 16, 2019

During dinner, there will also be a silent auction to support Northern Branch activities for the upcoming year, featuring assorted contributions from Northern Branch members. Please bring your checkbook!

An informal recital will follow the presentation of awards. The 2018 Northern Branch Champions will be invited to perform.

*2018 Branch Champions will receive a personal invitation via email on or before January 11, 2019. Please RSVP by replying to your email invitation.

2018 WUSPBA AGM Report

A few major highlights from this year’s WUSPBA AGM in Denver, Colorado:

1) The Music Board’s Education Committee has started a YouTube channel with informative videos designed to help individuals better navigate WUSPBA. There is educational material for competitors, for adjudicators, and for contest organizers.

2) Advance warning: the cutoff date to register for Pleasanton 2019 will be July 1, 2019. No late entries will be accepted. The 2019 contest will be held August 30 – September 1, 2019.

3) The new Vice President of WUSPBA is Suzan Karayel. Amara Reddick was re-elected Sanction Secretary, and Lezlie Mann was re-elected Solo Registrar.

4) Next year’s AGM will be hosted by the Northern Branch in Sacramento, California.

Summary of the voting outcomes on all of the Bylaw and Contest Rule proposals*:

Bylaw Proposals

BL1 – Branch AGMs – PASSED
BL2 – Juvenile Band Definition – PASSED (as amended)
BL3 – Oustide Association Band Grading – PASSED
BL4 – Late Fee Exemption – PASSED
BL5 – Nonparticipation Rebate – PASSED (as amended)
BL6 – Suspension of Membership – FAILED
BL7 – Unsanctioned Contest Penalty – PASSED

Contest Rule Proposals

CR1 – Light Music and Piobaireachd Grades – PASSED
CR2 – Emergency Bass Drum Substitution – PASSED (as amended)
CR3 – Solo MSR Terminology – PASSED
CR4 – Games Sponsors Local Rules – FAILED
CR5 – Grade 5 and Juvenile Bands Restrictions – FAILED
CR6 – Good Standing and Inclusion – FAILED
CR7 – Eliminate MiniMSR and Add QMM – FAILED
CR8 – Instructor Policy Proposal – FAILED
CR9 – Dual Musicians – PASSED (as amended)
CR10 – Band MSR Clarification – PASSED
CR11 – Arrival at Starting Line – WITHDRAWN
CR12 – Drumming Accompaniment Revision – PASSED
CR13 – Midsection Competition – PASSED (as amended)

*This is an unofficial report. The final language of each proposal and the official vote outcomes will be posted on the WUSPBA website.

2017 WUSPBA AGM Report

A few major highlights from this year’s WUSPBA AGM in Phoenix, Arizona:

1) The minimum number of pipers for a Grade 4 band has been reduced from six (6) to five (5).

2) Effective 2019, the Grade 4 Mini MSR band competition will be replaced by a special format MSR consisting of four (4) parts each of 2/4 march, strathspey, and reel. For 2018, Grade 4 bands will continue to play the Mini MSR (4-2-2).

3) Effective 2019, the Grade 5 Quick March Medley band competition parameters will be changed to eight (8) parts of marches, regardless of timing. For 2018, the QMM will continue to be based upon the time limit requirement of 2:45 to 4:30.

4) The new President of WUSPBA is Kevin Conquest, the new Executive Secretary is Christina Marshall, and the new Band Registrar is Jeff Mann.

5) Next year’s AGM will be in the Denver, Colorado area.

Continue reading “2017 WUSPBA AGM Report”

Northern Branch AGM – December 9, 2017

The WUSPBA Northern Branch AGM will be Saturday, December 9, 2017, at the United Irish Cultural Center in San Francisco.

Any officer nominations or proposed amendments to the Northern Branch bylaws may be submitted to Wes Weber, Northern Branch Secretary, at

There will be a couple of free workshops in the afternoon, before the meeting. Following the meeting, we will have an awards dinner to honor the 2017 Northern Branch Champions.

See the AGM Notice for details!

Regrade Applications Due Sept. 17!

Any bands or soloists who wish to be upgraded (or downgraded) for the 2018 competition season must submit a regrade application no later than September 17, 2017. Regardless of your competition record, a regrade application is the only way to guarantee that you will be considered for a change of grade next year!

Solo Regrade Application (PDF)
Solo Regrade Application (DOCX)

Band Regrade Application (PDF)
Band Regrade Application (DOCX)

See the Solo and Band Grading Information page on the WUSPBA website for more details.