Members of the Lincoln-Way Marching Band received some exciting news from their band directors Wednesday: After practice, the musicians gathered in the Lincoln-Way Central Auditorium, where each member was handed a single red rose as they viewed a video announcing their invitation to the 130th Annual Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade, to be held on January 1, 2019.
“The Rose Parade is the premier event for high school marching bands. We could not be more proud of all of our current and former students who helped the LWMB receive this invitation. We all are proud to continue the strong history of the Lincoln-Way band participating in the Rose Parade,” says director Justin Barnish.
Junior Hailey Woock says, “I’m at a loss for words … I’m excited to continue on our legacy. Lincoln-Way has so much history and so much pride; now we get to start this next chapter and represent Lincoln-Way in front of millions of people.”
The LWMB is one of only 19 marching bands to be invited to participate in the parade—and one of only nine high school bands. The application process initially began at the end of May; directors Bert Johnson, Cary Ruklic, Chris Mroczek, and Mr Barnish received notification of the selection on September 13.
“The Tournament of Roses Selection Committee representative called us during an evening rehearsal,” Mr Johnson said. “When I saw a Pasadena number on the phone my heart started racing. The first words I heard were, ‘Dr Johnson, I have some really great news.’ I knew we couldn’t share it out loud at that moment with the students, so I turned to the other directors and began fist pumping with a giant smile on my face. … They knew immediately what was happening. It was an incredibly joyful moment!”
The Tournament of Roses Association, which also owns the Rose Bowl Stadium and Rose Bowl football game, organizes the parade with nearly 1,000 volunteers who work for over an entire year to present the 5½-mile parade with more than 700,000 spectators along the parade route. The parade will be broadcast in 217 countries, in over 20 languages, to over 65 million people worldwide.
“Over the summer, we went to the Drum Major Institute, and I thought that would be where the bar would be placed,” said junior Nick Forlenza. “After knowing we’re going to the Rose Bowl now, the bar has been thrown 10 miles beyond where I thought it could go.”
“What an honor this is to be selected to perform at the 2019 Tournament of Roses Parade,” Mr Mroczek said. “The students’ reaction to the announcement of their selection was wonderful and unbelievable. I am so proud of the students in the Lincoln-Way Marching Band, past and present, and I am positive that they will represent L-W #210 with pride and honor in Pasadena!”
This event will mark the third Lincoln-Way appearance in the Rose Bowl Parade; Lincoln-Way first attended in 1982 and again 2000. “Lincoln-Way has a special relationship with the Rose Parade, reaching all the way back to 1982. We are incredibly proud of our students for this accomplishment, and humbled by the opportunity to represent our community in this iconic event,” Mr Ruklic said.