Coronavirus & The SJYO & Friends

23 September 2021 Update

Hello SJYO & Friends,

Despite our highest hopes of being able to return to life before covid, we continue of necessity to operate on a modified schedule.

All rehearsals continue to be held out of doors, with the concert date and location to be determined.  All members are encouraged to check their email for relevant and important information, including schedule and location details.

We continue to rehearse responsibly, properly socially distanced with masks encouraged.

As all rehearsals are weather-dependent, please do check the banner at the top of the website for current rehearsal status.

To each outdoor rehearsal, please bring the following:

  • Your own chair
  • Sturdy music stand (the flimsy wire stands tend to blow over easily in wind)
  • Stand light for evening rehearsals
  • Tuner – especially important
  • Pencil
  • Music bound in a notebook – please do not overlook this step.  Music is much more easily controlled when bound in a book.  I recommend page protectors as they do not blow around quite so easily.  Please be sure not to forget your music, as there are no extra copies and no way to make any.
  • Clothespins or other clips for securing your music
  • Personal items such as:
    • Water
    • Hand sanitizer
    • Mask
    • Bug spray
    • Hat for bright days (although be sure it won’t impede the ability of the musicians seated behind you to see the conductor)
    • A snack for break time
    • Anything else you think you may need

Thanks to Miss Amy’s dedication and indomitable spirit, the music will go on!

Here’s to a brilliant Fall, 2021 concert!

-Miss Chris for Miss Amy

8 March 2021 Update

Hello SJYO & Friends,

As we eagerly anticipate the arrival of spring and with it, the warmer weather, we are gearing up for our next concert season!

Although vaccine rollouts have begun in our state, the safety and wellness of each of our members continues to be our top priority.  Accordingly, the SJYO & friends will continue practice and performance procedures as established at the beginning of the pandemic.  This means that rehearsals and performance will be out-of-doors, appropriately socially-distanced, with masks encouraged.

As rehearsals are completely weather-dependent, PLEASE CHECK THE BANNER AT THE TOP OF ANY PAGE ON THIS WEBSITE for rehearsal information, which will be updated for each upcoming rehearsal.  If the banner is GREEN, that means the next rehearsal is ON.  If the banner is RED, that means the next rehearsal is CANCELLED.  Simple, right?  Email will also be sent out in advance of each cancellation.  No news is good news, so if you haven’t heard from the orchestra, that means the next rehearsal is onas scheduled.

To each outdoor rehearsal, please bring the following:

  • Your own chair
  • Sturdy music stand (the flimsy wire stands tend to blow over easily in wind)
  • Stand light for evening rehearsals
  • Tuner – especially important
  • Pencil
  • Music bound in a notebook – please do not overlook this step.  Music is much more easily controlled when bound in a book.  I recommend page protectors as they do not blow around quite so easily.  Please be sure not to forget your music, as there are no extra copies and no way to make any.
  • Clothespins or other clips for securing your music
  • Personal items such as:
    • Water
    • Hand sanitizer
    • Mask
    • Bug spray
    • Hat for bright days (although be sure it won’t impede the ability of the musicians seated behind you to see the conductor)
    • A snack for break time
    • Anything else you think you may need

If you are a member of the orchestra reading this, please check your email for more details and updates.

Here’s to another outstanding performance season!

-Miss Chris for Miss Amy

29 October 2020 Update

Hello SJYO & Friends,

It’s been a while since this page was updated, and I just wanted to highlight some things that have happened since March.

With the help of many friends of the orchestra, we have been able to hold our rehearsals, music camp, and all of our 2020 concerts completely socially distanced and out of doors!  We finished out our Spring, 2020 program in June, had music camp July through August, and had a condensed, Fall 2020 semester which culminated in the concert and autumn evening festivities!  Please check out the Looking Back pages for concert footage.

We do plan to keep the music going, even if it has to wait until the spring weather breaks and we continue out of doors in the open air.  Please stay tuned to updates, either by email if you’re on the orchestra’s email distribution, or on this page.

We want to thank everyone for their continued support of this orchestra, and of our AMAZING director, conductor, and founder – Amy Patton Weckesser!

Keep playing!

Miss Chris for Miss Amy

###21 March 2020 Update###

Hello SJYO & Friends!
As we continue to adapt and adjust to our new situation while we wait out the CoVID-19 Pandemic,  Miss Amy and several others are working behind the scenes to put the tools in your hands to continue practicing and even a virtual rehearsal.
MORE INFORMATION ON THIS COMING LATER TODAY.
Even though Miss Amy made the executive decision to suspend rehearsals until the crisis is over, we just got word that our host for the rehearsal hall has rightly suspended all group gatherings for the time being.  We’re all pulling together and doing what is needful to survive this outbreak and come through it with minimal effect.  I feel so blessed to work with such a top-notch group of folks!
So, in the meantime, may we strongly suggest that, in addition to your regular practice time, you take the time we would otherwise be at a rehearsal (Monday night and Wednesday afternoon) and use it to practice more individually?  Coming later today will be video material with which you can practice your music.  Mr. Steve Lipinski and Mr. Bob Cafaro are working on putting the videos together at various tempos to facilitate practice time.  Again, more instruction on this is coming later today.  As we do not know how much time we will have once we are allowed to assemble again to rehearse together, PLEASE make the most of this down time and take advantage of the resources made available to you through the efforts of Miss Amy and her incredible team.  At this point, it is up to each of us individually.  We will get together again, and when we do, we want to be fully prepared.  If you did not practice, it will definitely show.
That’s where we are at present.  As always, please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions.
Stay tuned for further instruction and access to practice materials.
Stay well and God bless!
-Miss Chris for Miss Amy

***15 March 2020 Update***

Hello SJYO & Friends,
As all schools in the state of NJ are now ordered closed, SJYO & Friends will NOT be holding either Wednesday or Monday practice at least until April 1st.  Please check the banner on the website for updates.  Of course, email updates will go out as developments occur.
Please, everyone, stay safe.  Do NOT panic.  Be careful to observe preventive practices, as well as local ordinances.
Until we meet again…
-Chris Snyder for Amy Weckesser

 

 

As everyone continues to watch the unfolding situation with COVID-19 or Novel Coronavirus, the SJYO & Friends is watching as well.

Miss Amy has the health, safety, and well-being of everyone in her orchestra as her top priority, and is monitoring these developments very closely.

In response to the growing concern over this new threat to our health, we have adopted the following policy as we continue through this rehearsal season:
Firstly, while it’s important to take every precaution to stay healthy and be prepared, it is perhaps even more important not to panic.

Above all, we understand and encourage every family to do what they feel is best for them.  If you are not comfortable coming to a rehearsal, please do not attend.  It’s a decision each of us must make individually.  We reiterate the importance of good hand-washing and other hygiene practices.  Again, while we don’t want anyone to miss a rehearsal, if you’re coughing, sneezing, or actively running a temperature, it’s best to err on the side of caution and stay home.

  • Please practice good hand-washing habits, especially after using the restroom.
  • Use hand sanitizer liberally and often, and remember not to touch anything above the neck (in other words, don’t rub your eyes, touch your mouth, nose, etc. as germs love warm, moist areas)
  • Keep a reasonable distance when talking with others.  Medical professionals recommend a six-foot distance while speaking with others to avoid spreading of airborne contagions.  While we don’t want to hold folks at arm’s length, we do want to be careful about not breathing into another person’s space.
  • Please refer to the CDC website for more detailed guidelines for prevention:

Secondly, as concerning cancellation policy, the SJYO & Friends have historically followed the Bellmawr school district’s guidelines for cancelling school.  You can keep an eye on what they’re doing here:
***In the event that we have to cancel a rehearsal, email will go out to the orchestra no later than 5:00 PM for a Monday night rehearsal, and 10:00 AM for a Wednesday rehearsal.  It will also be posted on the banner at the top of the orchestra’s website.***

 

Governor Murphy recommended in a press conference earlier today that gatherings of 250 people or more be cancelled in an effort to thwart the spread of this disease.  As our rehearsals do not come close to meeting this criterion, we will continue to rehearse as usual until further notice.  In the event of a cancellation, please refer to the cancellation policy above.  As always, please do not hesitate to  contact the orchestra with any questions or concerns.  We’re all in this together, and we will make it through!

Stay healthy and be well!