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Preserve Purdue's Oldest Icon

Raised toward our $10,000 Goal
156 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on November 26, at 12:55 AM EST
Project Owners

Preserve Purdue's Oldest Icon

We are excited to announce that we have met our original goal of raising $10,000! While meeting this goal allows us to make updates and repairs in the near future, our NEW stretch goal of $25,000 will help us establish an endowment that will generate funding to last a lifetime! An endowment would provide Purdue Bands & Orchestras the flexibility and peace of mind that the “World’s Largest Drum” will always be preserved. Join us to ensure the Big Bass Drum continues beating at Purdue!



The Big Bass Drum is the heartbeat of Purdue University. At 94 years old, it is the oldest member of the band.  It dates back to 1921, when Purdue’s first Director of Bands, Paul Spotts Emrick, had the idea of creating the “World’s Largest Drum.” The Big Bass Drum is one of the most notable Purdue icons. When people see the drum, they know Purdue is in town. More than any other tradition, the “World’s Largest Drum” represents Purdue Bands & Orchestras, a department with a rich and storied 125+ year history of instrumental music.



Every year, upkeep is needed to keep the Big Bass Drum in good working condition. This includes new drum heads, paint, wheels, transportation costs, beaters, and uniform components. Not to mention, seven students are needed to operate the drum that are currently not receiving a scholarship. With many appearances on campus, at football games, around the United States, and around the world, the drum has yearly wear and tear that must be addressed. 



We need your help to preserve one of Purdue's most notable icons!  Upkeep and maintenance are critical (and expensive) to make sure the drum continues to be a part of Purdue tradition. Without the drum, Purdue University and the “All-American” Marching Band would not be the same. Join us in preserving the Big Bass Drum and keeping the pride of the Boilermakers beating.  Make a BIG impact today!


Choose a giving level


Personal Thank You

Receive a personal thank you from the Big Bass Drum Crew.


Picture with Drum

Get your picture taken with the Big Bass Drum.


Audition Materials

Receive materials on the audition process for how to make the “World’s Largest” Drum Crew.


Fanfare Recognition

Donation recognition in our annual Fanfare newsletter publication.


Rehearsal Invitation

Invitation to a rehearsal for an opportunity to interact with faculty, staff and Big Bass Drum crew members.


Hit the Drum

Hit the Big Bass Drum!


Big Bass Drum Beater

Receive a Big Bass Drum beater.


Insider Discussion

Never been told before insider discussion with Dr. Pamela J. Nave about the drum history, dimensions, and more.


VIP Game Day Experience

VIP Game Day Experience with Purdue “All-American” Marching Band.


BIG IMPACT- Meet & Exceed Goal

Receive a Big Bass Drum head.