Kilties Drum and Bugle Corps

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The Kilties
Location Racine, WI
Division DCA Open Class
Founded 1934 (Junior)
1992 (All-Age)
Director Jeff Troudt
Championship titles VFW 1964, 1968, 1969
Uniform Buchannan Modern tartan is worn by the corps. Black battlejacket with black gauntlets. Black belt with a chrome buckle. Black knee high socks and black highland boots. A black tam is worn for headgear.

The Kilties Drum and Bugle Corps is a competitive all age coed drum and bugle corps. Based in Racine, Wisconsin, the Kilties are a member of Drum Corps Associates (DCA). From 1934 through 1982, the Kilties were a junior corps that won three VFW National Championships and were seven-time World Championship Finalists in Drum Corps International. The group was reorganized as an alumni corps in 1986, became a parade corps in 1993, entered competition as a senior field corps in 1994 and evolved into an "all-age" coed corps in 1999. They have been finalists at the DCA all-age world championships three times including obtaining Bronze Medal status in the 2015 season and awarded the 1997 Drum Corps Midwest senior corps championship.

Early history[edit]

Junior Kilties[edit]

The Junior Kilties Drum and Bugle were founded in 1934 by Raymond Vance as an activity associated with the YMCA as an all boy drum and bugle corps. The original name of the corps was the Kiwanis Kilties in honor of the sponsor. A local seamstress made the original uniforms for the corps. The first plaid that the corps wore was the Royal Stewart tartan. The corps made their début on July 4, 1936 at the Independence Day Parade. It was on August 5, 1936 that the corps hit the field for exhibition at the local music festival. The junior Kilties went inactive after the 1982 season.[1][2][3]

Modern history[edit]

The All-Age Kilties[edit]

In 1992 the corps initially reemerged as an all male senior/alumni corps through the efforts of local alumni of the junior Kilties and participated in local events and competitions.

The corps entered back into the field competition in 1994 with their début in Menasha, Wisconsin on June 11, 1994. The Kilties competed exclusively in the Drum Corps Midwest circuit and obtained full DCM membership in Toledo, Ohio in their first year of competition and now compete as an all-age coed corps in the DCA and DCI-All Age circuits.[4][5]

As a DCA corps and DCI all-age division corps the Kilties have members from 16 years old through adulthood.[6]


Sample of the Buchanan Tartan

The current all age coed corps uniform consists of a Modern Buchanan tartan and a black battlejacket. Accessories for the uniform are: black tam, black gauntlets, black knee high socks with black highland boots. A sporran is also worn by the horn and pit players.

The color guard uniforms are modern in nature with the exception of wearing kilts as a part of their parade uniform.


  1. ^ Goodwill Spectacular poster, Racine Journal Times, April 15, 2014.
  2. ^ Kiltie Kadets wait to perform in 1971, Racine Journal Times, April 15, 2014.
  3. ^ Boys of '76 - Music Spectacular poster, Racine Journal Times, April 15, 2014.
  4. ^ George D. Fennel, Racine : drum and bugle corps capital of the world, Arcadia Publishing, 2008.
  5. ^ Alan R. Karls, Racine's Horlick Athletic Field: Drums Along the Foundries, The History Press, 2014.
  6. ^ Tessa Fox, Kiltie Klassic returns, honors alumni, Racine Journal Times, August 1, 2013.

External links[edit]