Morgan State University’s marching band, the Magnificent Marching Machine, led the procession of marching bands at the 2019 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York.
The Magnificent Marching Machine’s performance marked the first time a band from a Maryland HBCU (historically Black colleges and universities) participated in the historic parade. It is the fifth time a HBCU band was part of the parade, according to CBS.
In all, 11 bands were selected to perform at the parade. They were: Florida’s Awesome Original Second Time Arounders Marching Band, Blue Springs High School Golden Regiment Marching Band of Missouri, Catalina Foothills High School Falcon Band of Arizona, Franklin Regional High School Panther Band of Pennsylvania, Madison Central High School Band of Kentucky, Martin Luther King, Jr. High School’s Kings of Halftime of Georgia, Ronald Reagan High School Marching Band of Texas, Western Carolina University Marching Band of North Carolina, Macy’s Great American Marching Band and the New York Police Department’s marching band.
(HuffPost’s parent company, Verizon Media, is owned by Verizon, which is a sponsor of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.)
Morgan State University’s band director Melvin Miles told The Baltimore Sun earlier this month that the school’s appearance at the parade is about honoring local roots.
“When people see us, I want them to know, ‘That’s Morgan.’ I want people to remember us,” he said.
High winds threatened to ground the balloons at parade, but the New York Police Department cleared them to fly at the big annual event.
The clearance from the police department allowed some new balloons to make appearances, including Astronaut Snoopy, Green Eggs and Ham, and Smokey Bear.