Local marching band participates in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

GRANTS PASS, Ore. – The Grants Pass High School Band and Color Guard is heading to New York City for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

The last time the group participated in the parade was in 2010. Eight years later, Band Director Jason Garcia said it’s an honor to be selected again.

“Being selected again is such an honor to not only represent our school but also the state of Oregon and the West Coast,” Garcia said.

The group is one of eight schools across the country performing in the parade.

Student Valeria Gonzalez said it’s an honor that is well deserved.

“We work really hard. It is like 24 hours of practice a week plus school, plus work, we definitely work hard for this,” Gonzalez said.

For many of the 230 students going, this is something they have wanted to be a part of for a long time.

“I remember watching when I was in 5th grade and I was like I want to be part of that,” Gonzalez said.

“This is a huge trip and experience and it’s really exciting to be on live TV and get everyone in the U.S. to watch us,” Student Isaac Burgess said.

This group did face a major setback. This summer the organization couldn’t practice outside because of the wildfire smoke.

“It’s been tough because we are a little bit behind and that all stems from the smoke this summer, so it pushed everything back,” Garcia said.

Now that the smoke is gone, the organization is focusing on the big day.

“It is a little scary I am not going to lie, but we have put in the time and I think we are going to do fine,” Burgess said.

The Macy’s Thanksgivings Day Parade airs on NBC5/NBC2 at 9 a.m. Thursday November 22.

NBC5 News at Sunrise co-anchor Allison Ross graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in broadcast journalism.

Before coming to NBC5 News, she was a reporter and anchor at KOMU in Columbia, MO and interned at FOX 25 News in Boston. Allison also spent six months reporting in Europe where she covered the European Commission.

When she’s not in the newsroom, Allison loves adventures. She enjoys traveling and is excited to explore the West Coast. Allison’s motto: “Try everything once!”

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