Chops, Inc., an “all age” marching-arts corps, is a nonprofit organization based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We offer year-round co-educational performing arts programs. Our mission is to provide a program to educate members of all ages in the art of music and performance.
Chops offers its membership a positive, fun environment that emphasizes character development, leadership, teamwork, self-discipline, and the pursuit of personal growth and performance excellence.
We make every effort to accommodate the participation of all who express interest in our programs, regardless of gender, racial or ethnic origin, creed, sexual orientation, or ability. All events and performances are accessible to persons with disabilities, limitations and special needs.
Chops was founded as Chopstix Percussion, a marching percussion unit, in 1991. The group was incorporated as a nonprofit organization and obtained 501(c)(3) status in 1997. Top Chops Brass Line was formed in 1994 with the same high energetic, crowd-pleasing philosophy that was the foundation of Chopstix Percussion. After a successful start for Top Chops, the groups took on the overarching identity of Chops, Inc.
Chops, Inc currently has a Drum Corps, Colorguard / Winterguard, and three Pan steel-drum programs. Our Pan programs include: a professional steel drum band (Pan-handlers); an amateur steel drum band (Tin Cups); and an educational outreach program that provides free classroom steel-drum instruction to K-12 schools in the Greater Twin Cities Metro area.
Currently, Chops, Inc. is one of four drum corps in the upper Midwest. Chops performs at approximately seven field shows and 15 parades/concerts throughout the summer and fall. The corps is comprised of more than 60 members whose ages range from 16 to 75+. Our membership encompasses many professional, educational and socioeconomic backgrounds. Former members support Chops by volunteering their time and performing in an activity they love. For most members, Chops represents an important opportunity for artistic participation, as well as a positive environment for self-expression.
Chops, Inc receives revenues from its charitable gambling operation, and also counts on financial and in-kind donations from civic organizations, local businesses, and individual donors. Over the years, volunteers have contributed thousands of hours to provide the best experience possible for its members. Chops, Inc. strives to teach its members that lifelong friendships, leadership and fun are the essence of self-confidence and success.