Salem Optirama Show
Every January from 1964 thru 1983 the Salem Optimist Club and the Flamingos (Argonauts), hosted a Drum & Bugle Corps contest at the old armory in Salem Oregon. This show lasted all day and consisted of percussion and brass competitions in solo, duet, quartet, ensemble, and full-corps standstill performances. For color guards they had rifle, flag, and saber solos, duets, quartets; and A-Guard, B-Guard and C-Guard floor shows. The pinnacle was the full-corps floor show on a basketball court (1964 thru 1976). Yes, that’s right. Have you ever seen 80 – 100 kids march a show on a basketball court? I bet not. It’s crowded, and LOUD.
Optirama was the only opportunity most of us had in the 70s to earn medals for the activities listed above.
[From 1960 thru 1969, the Thunderbirds sponsored their Mid-Winter/ NW Championships show that also had individual and group competitions. Their show preceded the first Optirama by four years, but was held in the months of March or April, whereas Optirama was in January]
Near the end of its life, Optirama moved from the traditional January show to March of each year. They also added a high school division, which was not totally out of character because back in 1967, Seattle’s Wilson Jr. High (where the Cascade Cadets practiced) also competed at Optirama.
Links to More Data
See “Show Programs” in header above for ….. you guessed it, Optirama show programs! (Can’t fool you guys)
The links below all contain Optirama score and placement data from 1964 through 1983.
This is the best information available to us at this time. If you have better data that you’d like to share, please let us know.
1975 (Jan 27) Optirama-12, partial data
1976 (Jan 28) Optirama-13, partial data
1977 (March 22) Optirama-14, partial data
1981 Optirama-18, no data found
1982 (March 18) Optirama-19, partial data
1983 (March 20) Optirama-20, partial data – The last Optirama