HARRISON COUNTY, Miss. (WLOX) - The West Harrison High School Marching Band returned from their performance in the Tournament of Roses Parade, and this event is one that these students won’t soon forget.
As marching bands go, there aren't many experiences that top the Tournament of Roses Parade. For the musicians in the West Harrison High School Marching Band, this was a once in a lifetime trip.
“This will definitely stick with me forever. It’s a great experience and it will be wonderful on a resume,” said junior drum major Rachel Weaver.
Playing in the grandfather of all parades isn’t without hard work and lots of preparation.
“We started preparing last summer, 2019 summer, and we’ve been preparing since the day we left," said senior saxophone player Jacob Raymond. "We had to continue practicing our marching show because we had to do it for the Rose Bowl. We had to also add in the parade marching, which took a lot of time out of the marching show and we had to learn five more pieces of music, which is lot.”
The long hours spent in the practice rooms paid off as these students, two of which graduate this year, marched nearly five miles in this unique experience.
“It’s my last year in high school and my last year in band. I made so many memories in that trip that are so happy,” said senior flute and piccolo player Alexia Manganti.
“Marching in the Rose Bowl itself, it was really fun," said junior saxophone player Kristofer Lanmon. "All of the people who were there, once you got near the very end, everyone was edging you to keep on going and going, you were almost there. It was very nice.”
“There was a road and there were shops all around," Weaver said. "That was probably the best part because there were people on every side waving and smiling. It was just so magical.”
This wasn’t the first primetime march for the West Harrison High School marching band, they have also marched in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.