The mission of the Kenosha Area Pipes and Drums Association is to honor our fallen law enforcement officers and firefighters who have given their lives in service to the community, promote relations between the protective services and the public, preserve cultural heritage and enrich our community by providing traditional music of the bagpipes and drums.
In the fall of 2002, Kenosha, WI area police officers, firefighters and sheriff's deputies embarked on a joint effort to create a musical association of public safety personnel to supplement the existing honor guards. The result is the Kenosha Area Pipes and Drums Association (K.A.P.&D.A.). This association was formed in the interest of honoring those who risk their lives serving the public, preserving cultural heritage and enriching the community. The association is self-funded and is recognized by the IRS as a not-for-profit (501c3) organization.
Bagpipe and drum bands are a long standing tradition of the protective services. This tradition has been preserved for many generations by law enforcement and fire personnel who understand its importance. Bagpipes offer a unique and moving listening experience, whether it be the mournful, inspiring sound of "Amazing Grace" performed by a solo piper or a stirring march played by a full pipe and drum band. Over the years, police and fire pipe and drum bands have played a public relations role as well as honoring those who have made the supreme sacrifice in the performance of their duties. Today, the pipe and drum corps is a symbol of fire and police services around the world.
Forming the K.A.P.&D.A. was fraught with challenges. There were many obstacles to overcome, not the least of which was teaching a bunch of cops and firefighters how to play the pipes and drums. There are also substantial costs involved in purchasing uniforms and instruments. We have worked hard to meet the challenges, both organizational and musical, and have made great progress.
K.A.P.&D.A. pipers have been performing at functions since mid-2003 and, currently, we have more than 20 uniformed pipers and drummers as well as a color guard comprised of non-playing members. We were chosen to serve as the pipe and drum band for the Professional Firefighters of Wisconsin State Honor Guard. We've performed in parades, weddings, birthday parties, community and charity events, memorials and funerals in Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana. As we continue to grow, we look forward to sharing this great tradition here in Kenosha and beyond.
Pipe Major Matt Martin in 2003
Why do police and firefighters play the bagpipes anyway??
The Kenosha Area Pipes and Drums Association wears a military-style traditional highland dress uniform: kilt, horsehair sporran, glengarry, etc. We chose and wear the MacLennan modern tartan because of its attractive appearance and its use of the representative colors of the band: blue for police, red for fire, gold for sheriff and green to represent the Celtic heritage. We were granted permission by the MacLennan clan to wear the tartan and also the clan crest, which features a bagpiper, for our kilt pins and cap badges.
More about the K.A.P.&D.A. uniform...