Colony High School Marching Band prepares for Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade performance

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PALMER, Alaska (KTUU) A cold morning didn't keep the Colony High School's Marching Band from squeezing in a last practice before heading out to New York City to perform in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.

Students had to take it from the field to the gym Saturday morning.

Nearly 200 student musicians and their parents will head to the big apple next weekend.

The application process is extensive. Band Director Jamin Burton said it included writing essays, performance videos and even letters of recommendation.

"The kids have worked really hard and it shows in how they're performing," he said.

According to a marching band resources website, the parade only accepts 12 bands to perform during the two mile route through Central Park and in front of the iconic store. "They have put in hundreds of hours each," Burton said.

Burton admits the parade is a huge opportunity for the Alaskans to share music and art with millions of other people. "Band is a tradition in art and the people you're around, so you're making art, you're being expressive, you're creating and then you're sharing that with the world, he said.

"It's about making the world and your community a better place."

A send off for the students is scheduled to beign at 2 pm Sunday afternoon at the Palmer Train Depot.

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