As a proud alumnus of the Jamestown High School Red Raider Marching Band ('90-'93), this story tickles me!

Students were Chicago-bound yesterday, getting ready to march in the Windy City's famous St. Patrick's Day parade!

In order to be considered, they had to fill out an extensive application including a video and letters of recommendation.

The route goes right along the infamous green river.  For generations, thousands gather along Michigan Ave, Columbus Drive, and on the banks of the Chicago Riverwalk to witness the green Chicago River.  45 pounds of vegetable dye give the the river it's hue between Columbus and Wacker, and it stays that way for about 5 hours.

You can watch for JHS live, as the parade will be streamed online starting at 1 p.m.

As a member of the JHS Marching Band, I got to see a LOT of amazing things that I would've otherwise not experienced.

  • I performed on the David Letterman show with the band in 1992.
  • We went on a Disney cruise and performed in the Electric Lights Parade in 1991.
  • I traveled the state with an elite team of professional musicians who were all under 18 years old.

I'm forever grateful to my time in the band.  The discipline I learned felt AWFUL at the time, but the lessons carried on to everyday life for me. If your child is thinking about getting into band, encourage them.  It made a HUGE difference in my life!