The  Optimists  Alumni  Drum  &  Bugle  Corps

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

. . . March On!

Dutch Boy / Flying Dutchmen / Northstar

Alumni Corps member Matt Davis marched with Dutch Boy as have the members of the Northstar guard who have been marching with the Optimists Alumni since 2010. In addition, Board member and Alumni Corps member Doug Darwin is on the board of the Northstar organization. Jason Filipchuk, a former Alumni member, also marched with Dutch Boy.

Photo of: Dutch Boy  (1973)

Dutch Boy Drum Corps (1973)

Photo of: Dutch Boy (2007)

Dutch Boy (2007)

For more than 30 years the Dutch Boy Drum & Bugle Corps and the Northstar Youth Organization has been a staple of the Drum Corps community in Waterloo Region, Canada and the United States. With roots dating back to 1954 the organization has provided growth opportunites for hundreds of young people through it's various drum corps', winter guard and cadet programs. Compiled here is a collection of both audio and video of past performances, and over 1000 images and memorabilia for fans and alumni to enjoy. .

In 1954 the 48th Field Squadron Royal Canadian Engineers Trumpet Band was formed. The following year John Robins joined as a bass player setting in motion the legacy that would follow. By 1960 the members were interested in the new marching & maneuvering style of show that had become popular in America. Trumpet Bands were discouraged from adopting this style so they created a second unit called the Flying Dutchmen Drum & Bugle corps. For 2 years the members performed in both units doing 2 different types of shows in 2 different sets of uniforms. By 1961 the Engineers Trumpet Band came to an end and the members continued performing as the Flying Dutchmen Senior Corps until this unit folded as well in 1966. Many of the "Senior" members merged with the Guelph Royalaires. 

Photo of: Flying Dutchmen (1976)

Flying Dutchmen Drum Corps (1976)

John Robins took the remains of the Dutchmen and created the Flying Dutchmen Junior corps in 1967. By 1969 it was decided that this unit needed a feeder corps and Don Ross became the director of the Dutch Boy Cadets. These two groups operated independently until 1976 when it was decided to merge them into a new corps called the Northstar.  

Northstar performed for 2 years in 1977 and 1978 before they too were dissolved. In 1977 a feeder corps was created for the Northstar called the Cadets of Dutch Boy. This unit outlived the Northstar and became known as the Dutch Boy Drum & Bugle Corps in 1980. Once again a feeder corps for this unit was created and they were imaginatively christened the Cadets of Dutch Boy.  

These 2 units were quite successful over the next decade. In 1982 Dutch Boy won the Class A Championships. In 1986 the leadership was changed as John Robins stepped down and Al DiCroce became the new Corps Director. This paved the way for the corps to break into the exclusive DCI Top 12 in 1990. At the end of the 1993 season Dutch Boy folded. The Cadets of Dutch Boy carried on as the sole active unit and in 1998 they assumed the Dutch Boy identity and competed in Division III and Division II until 2009.

The text for this page was taken from the Dutch Boy website.