Amid the floats, balloons of Disney characters and performers, the Tarpon Springs High School Leadership Conservatory for the Arts’ marching band students will represent the state of Florida at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade this November. It is one of 10 bands from across the country selected to perform.
“It is an honor for our student performers to be selected for the 2022 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and have the privilege to perform in front of 5 million spectators and over 50 million television viewers,” conservatory director Kevin Ford said in a news release. “This once-in-a-lifetime experience will provide our students the opportunity to act as ambassadors to our community, state, and school which will bring prestige back home to our great state of Florida and our Tampa Bay community.”
The Tarpon Springs Leadership Conservatory for the Arts is “a nationally recognized program providing an innovative, seamless curriculum in academic study, instrumental music, dance, and leadership skills designed to develop tomorrow’s leaders,” according to the release. Students from all over Pinellas County are eligible to apply for the magnet program at Tarpon Springs High School.
In October 2021, the Tarpon Springs High School Leadership Conservatory for the Arts won the Bands of America Regional Championship high school band competition in Orlando. In November, it went on to take first place at the Bands of America Regional Championship in Tennessee, competing against high school marching bands from six Southeastern states.
The school’s marching band has performed at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade before, in 2013.
Macy’s gave the band 18 months to raise funds ahead of the parade. The Tarpon Springs Band Boosters have partnered with the Pinellas Community Foundation to seek donations to ensure all band and color guard students can participate. Donations can be made at pinellascf.org/marchtomacys or by texting MACYS to 71441.