The Patriot Brass Ensemble
The Patriot Brass Ensemble is the first and only professional and national organization dedicated to serving Veterans and Military Families. In 2005 the group first performed in Ridgefield, NJ, after local resident and founder Steven Behnke was unhappy with the music at the town's Memorial Day Ceremony. He spoke to the town and secured funding to construct a new ensemble, and the effect the music had far surpassed all expectations. "We had Veterans walking up to us telling us how much it meant to them to have live music. That feeling was amazing", said Steven. Little did he know, this would become his life's work.
As the group grew over the years, it was clear that it needed to become a full time 501(c)(3) charity: in 2010, the Patriot Brass Ensemble was born. In the ensemble's first official year, they performed over 40 events for a wide range of Veterans' organizations and hospitals. These events supported local organizations such as the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign War, AMVETS, Arkansas Fallen Hero's Memorial Motorcycle Ride, The Patriot Guard of Connecticut and The Elks Army of Hope Fundraiser. They have also performed many concerts at VA Hospitals along the East Coast, including a special concert at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center before it was relocated. The ensemble was also given national attention in 2011 when it performed on "Fox and Friends". The goal has expanded to also offer these services to all Veterans for their events when military bands are unavailable.
In 2013 the Patriot Brass Ensemble used the model created in Boston and Washington D.C to expand the network to Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Pittsburgh, and San Francisco. If you would like to get involved and help us get the word out to Veterans in these local areas, please contact us at: www.patriotbrass.org