By DEBBIE GILLUMTuesday November 25, 2014 8:55 AM Written for ThisWeekNews Dublin Villager newspaper
Dublin’s three high school bands are scheduled to appear in the 95th annual Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day parade.
This will be the first time that all three Dublin bands have been televised outside of central Ohio. The 6 ABC / Dunkin Donuts Thanksgiving Day parade will be broadcast on WWHO-DT The CW on channel 53 from 9 a.m. to noon.
The band members will march the 1.4 mile parade route in the nation’s oldest Thanksgiving Day parade, along with 20 other bands that are performing.
The band was scheduled to leave Ohio on Tuesday Nov. 25 and drive to Philadelphia in eight deluxe motor coaches. Upon their arrival the next day, they were scheduled to go on a historical tour of Philadelphia which included seeing the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and the Declaration House.
Since 1987, all three bands have travelled to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. every three years.
“We decided to do something different this year,” said Bradstreet. “This is a good change of pace.”
Last year in Jan., the band directors approached the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day parade organizers, submitted an application and then all three bands were selected, according to Jeremy Bradstreet, Coffman’s band director.
Now, the band is going on a trip once every two years, so that way a student would have the opportunity to go to Walt Disney World and another location such as Philadelphia.
Brian Stevens, Jerome’s band director, said that this will be a “great performance experience for the students.”
“The kids are excited about being on a national stage and to get this kind of national performance experience,” said Stevens.
Throughout the trip, the bands will see “all the sights there are to see,” according to Bradstreet.
After the parade on Thursday, the band will depart for New York City where they will spend the rest of the trip sightseeing. Students will enjoy Thanksgiving Dinner in Manhattan at Naples 45 or Café Centro, depending on which group they are assigned to.
Other meals will be at restaurants like Hard Rock Cafe, Dallas BBQ and Planet Hollywood.
The trip was organized by Bob Rogers Travel. Mike Crandall, Account Manager from Bob Rogers Travel, said that this is a great trip to build on student’s love of traveling.
“It will be both an amazing time with friends and an opportunity to learn so much about Philadelphia and the art scene in New York City,” he said.
He also said that he has worked with many school districts that have multiple high schools but Dublin is the only district where all the schools travel together and act as one.
“I think the fact that the high schools work together represents the city very well. It’s great to see so many marching bands from the same community march on a parade on TV,” he said.
On Friday, the band will tour the Observation Deck at the Rockefeller Center, the Radio City Music Hall, the NBC Studios and Times Square.
Bradstreet explained that on Friday all the students will get to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular starring The Rockettes. The band members may choose another Broadway musical such as Aladdin or Phantom of the Opera to see on Saturday.
The band is scheduled to visit Battery Park, board the Staten Island Ferry, view the Statue of Liberty, visit the National September 11th Memorial, and explore Little Italy and Chinatown on Saturday.
According to Stevens, the Dublin band members “will be one of the first large groups to tour the September 11th Memorial.”
The band will leave New York City Saturday night and return to Dublin Sunday morning.
There are a total of 393 students and chaperones going on the trip. Of those, 143 are from Jerome, 72 from Scioto and 178 from Coffman. The trip cost students and chaperones $925.