VERO BEACH — A local high school band was recently invited to march in the United Kingdom for the 2019 New Years Day Parade, which will garner more than half-a-million attendees and about 3 million television viewers worldwide, authorities said.
This will be the largest event in history for band members at Vero Beach High School. The school is located at 1707 16th Street.
“We are very excited to have the Lord Mayor of Westminster and parade officials on our campus and equally excited about marching in the New Year’s Day Parade in London,” Director of Bands Page Howell said in a statement. “This is a tremendous honor and opportunity for our students, our school and our community.”
Officials such as Former Lord Mayor of the City of Westminster, Councillor Steve Summers, Executive Director of the London New Year’s Day Parade, Robert Bone, and Director of International Participation, Jonathan Whaley, officially invited the high school band at 9 a.m. Monday at the Performing Arts Center to march overseas.
The band will march in the London parade with a route that goes through Piccadilly Circus, Regent Street, Trafalgar Square and Whitehall, officials said. The parade will end near the Palace of Westminster, Big Ben and Westminster Abbey.
Schools Superintendent Mark Rendell said the invitation represents the high quality of the Vero Beach High School Band.
“That is a testament to the high standards and expectations that have been in place for several years,” Rendell said in a statement. “I am confident that our students and staff will represent our community well and make the most of this once in a lifetime experience.”
Each spring, the Lord Mayoralty picks a number of groups to visit in America in connection with the London parade, officials said. The visit aims to either inspire and reconfirm the importance of invitations to groups already invited, or to give invitations to participate in future events.
“Our student musicians will most certainly astound their audiences,” School District Board Chairman Shawn Frost said in a statement. “This is the payoff for supporting the arts in our schools and we couldn’t be more thrilled.”
The band is actively fundraising in order to send all eligible students to march overseas. The price of the all-inclusive trip includes a guided educational tour of London and its world-renowned sites.
For more information on fundraising or to donate, visit the band website and click the “donate now” button, or text the word “give” to 772-539-4248.
Photos by School District of Indian River County