Jasmine Minnich has been singing all her life, and now she has the opportunity to take her talent to Europe with the 2023 American Music Abroad Tour. The West Perry eldest will be touring and performing in Belgium, Germany, France, Austria and Switzerland next summer.
“I’m very excited to explore,” Jasmine said. “A bit about shopping. I also look forward to singing and learning.
Minnich, who is diagnosed with autism, found an outlet in music. She performed in four musical theater productions in the West Perry School District and participated in more than 10 musical arrangements with her school choir. When she started school, it was expected that she would end up in a special needs program, but she persevered.
“I think one of his biggest accomplishments was getting in front of people,” said his mother, Amanda Minnich. “She kind of blossomed one day. There were a lot of doubts when she was in primary school. They practically told me she wasn’t going to be able to go to regular school. For her , to be where she is today, period, it’s amazing.
“I love the sound of music,” Jasmine said. “I love the lyrics, the messages and sometimes the sound of how the notes go. I love the mix in music of instruments, voices and other sounds that meld into a harmony or melody that creates just a message or a story or a theme. (It can be) really touching or moving.
Sometimes Jasmine gets nervous before a performance, but she remembers “I practiced, I’m pretty good, and if something goes wrong, improvise.”
According to the AMA’s website, it was “founded in 1975 by a high school band manager and his wife to fulfill their dream of sharing their love of Europe with high school kids, college students, and adults. American Music Abroad has organized over 320 music tours with a specialization/concentration in Western Europe involving over 37,000 participants….In the eyes of American Music Abroad, music is indeed an “international language”.Our mission is to provide opportunities for musical exchanges promoting better understanding and friendship.
However, the opportunity is not free and participants must pay for their uniforms and travel expenses. Minnich set up a GoFundMe, with a goal of $6,000, to cover expenses. They are also planning several fundraising events. The first will be a bake sale on December 17 at Shermans Dale Dollar General, 5001 Spring Road. Minnich works for Dollar General and her colleagues will help with fundraising by donating baked goods and their time.
The Minnichs also hope to host a few other fundraising events in the coming months, including an under-sale, community yard sale and chicken barbecue.
“We’re still working out the details,” Minnich said. “I know several people who are heavy smokers; (we hope) ask them to volunteer their time. We’ll see if we can find a place to donate chickens.
Jasmine is potentially not the only student on the West Perry tour, the Minnichs know a few other interested students. Their fundraiser mainly covers Jasmine’s adventure, but if they exceed what they need for her expenses, they plan to support other interested students.
“We had discussed hopefully achieving the goal of not only sending Jasmine, but also being able to help fundraise for other students, because it’s very expensive,” Minnich said. “I’m sure we’re not the others who can’t afford to do it on our own, and I think it’s an amazing experience for everyone. That’s why I think we’ll do as much fundraising as possible. We will see where we are and if we can help another student.
Selling baked goods is the family’s current focus. They are looking for donations both for the bake sale and on their GoFundMe. Those interested in donating baked goods can contact Amanda Minnich at email@example.com. Those interested in donating to GoFundMe can find it at https://gofund.me/02b0db86.
“I’m thrilled and hope a lot of people buy the baked goods and enjoy them over the holidays,” Jasmine said.