Wesley Whatley, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade creative producer, surprises members of the Mountaineer Marching Band with an invitation to march in the 2024 parade on Saturday (Sept. 16) at the Caperton Indoor Practice Facility. Cheldon Williams (right), WVU associate director of bands and director of athletic bands, accepted $10,000 to kick off fundraising for the trip through the Pride Travel Fund.
(WVU Photo/Matt Sunday)
Representing West Virginia University and the entire Mountain State, “The Pride of West Virginia,” the Mountaineer Marching Band, will participate in the 2024 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, marking the second appearance for the band in the historic parade.
A public announcement was made during halftime at Milan Puskar Stadium.
The WVU Marching Band, based at the College of Creative Arts, is one of ten marching bands selected for the annual event out of hundreds of applications from across the country.
“The students are thrilled to represent the region, the state of West Virginia and our University on this major national stage,” Cheldon Williams, associate director of bands and director of athletic bands, said. “I look forward to our continual growth as musicians and human beings over the next year so we can bring our best to the vibrant streets of New York City.”
“For more than 100 years, the Mountaineer Marching Band has entertained audiences, from hometown halftime shows to parade routes and venues across the country, representing their state with pageantry and style,” said Wesley Whatley, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade creative producer. “The Macy’s Parade Band Committee is proud to welcome back the talented students of West Virginia University to the Big Apple to march in the 2024 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.”
The Pride will spend the next 14 months planning for its appearance which is a return trip. As part of this achievement, the Macy’s team presented the Mountaineer Marching Band with a $10,000 fundraising kickoff.
“Participating in the 2016 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was a tremendous experience for our students,” Scott Tobias, associate professor and director of bands, said.
“I’m excited our current students will have the opportunity to have a similar experience next year as part of the 2024 parade. We all look forward to returning to New York City with ‘The Pride of West Virginia’ to represent the School of Music, the University and the entire state of West Virginia on one of the grandest stages for marching bands.”
A record $172,842 was donated to the Pride Travel Fund by 1,282 donors in 2016 to help the Mountaineer Marching Band travel to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
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