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Marching Our Way Downtown Lakeland By Ariana Casillas-Rodriguez

Christmas lights filled the dark streets, chairs were stacked along the sidewalk and families of all ethnicities gathered together to enjoy the annual Lakeland Christmas Parade. There were giant balloon animals, floats, and so much more! And alongside such captivating visuals was Lake Gibson’s band “The Tribe” marching through the streets.

The Tribe performed Spirit of the Season by Roland Barrett. They also included several cadences referred to as Jalepeño, Smokestack, and Blue Chicago. The Tribe was very festive by wrapping lights around their instruments, wearing Santa hats, and decorating the colorguard’s rifles as candy canes.

This year there was a specific part of the parade that most students found quite memorable. In band there are times where it will just be drumline playing and the horns are assigned to do specific motions and not play. However, this year some of the band students took it upon themselves to create a “remix” of the drum cadences. A large section of the band yelled out random words that went along with the music and as more students caught on, the louder they got. Even the kids on the sidewalks were singing along and mimicking what the band students were doing. This was especially memorable because it was a time in the parade where they did something silly, and had lots of laughs. Colorguard began to look back in disbelief and also joined in on the fiasco.

The Christmas Parade brings lots of joy to not only the audience but everyone in the parade. Band is held to an expectation because they are required to go to the parade, and it is their job to provide entertainment, but sometimes there are just moments where they’re little kids again enjoying the parade.