Viper band to march in Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade 2022

Vandegrift director of bands Mike Howard announcing on April 21 that the Viper band and Vision Dance Co. has been invited to represent only a handful of marching bands in the 2022 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. LYNETTE HAALAND

The Vandegrift Viper marching band and Vision Dance Company will perform in the 2022 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, representing the state of Texas. 

This will mark the first parade appearance by the band, and by any Leander ISD band.

“I am excited and honored for the Vandegrift band to be chosen to perform in the 2022 Macy’sThanksgiving Day Parade,” said Mike Howard, VHS director of bands. “One of our program’s missions is to seek out life-changing performance opportunities for our students, and this will certainly qualify. We are proud to represent Leander ISD, the city of Austin and the state of Texas in this iconic holiday event!” 

The Viper marching band cheered loudly upon hearing the news and joined the celebration formally with confetti at the call of “Let’s Have a Parade!” The iconic phrase that has signaled the start of the beloved annual holiday tradition since 1924.

Vandegrift will spend the next 18 months planning for their parade appearance. Rehearsals and creative fundraising events will not only bring the school and local community closer together but also prepare the students for the march of a lifetime. 

To help kick-start the band’s fundraising goal, Macy’s has made a$10,000 donation in support of their march towards the Big Apple.

Each year, the Macy’s Parade Band Committee looks for bands that have the stage presence and musical expertise to captivate the streets of New York City and millions of viewers across the country. The Viper band and Vision was selected from more than 100 applicants as one of nine selected bands to march in the 96th edition of the annual holiday spectacle. 

The band will join the revelry along with other iconic Macy’s staples: floats, giant character balloons, clowns and superstar performers galore, helping to create an unforgettable experience for millions.

“There are only a handful of high school music programs in America with the potential, creative vision,talent, musicianship and near perfect execution on the field to place them in the number one slot at Bandsof America Grand National Championships each fall,” said Wesley Whatley, creative producer, Macy’sThanksgiving Day Parade. “In 2019, Vandegrift High School walked away with the win as national champions and we look forward to adding yet another feather in their cap as we welcome them for their Thanksgiving debut in the 2022 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!”

For more than ninety years, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has given thanks to what Macy’s values most–- its loyal fans. More than 5,000 Macy’s employees and dedicated volunteers work tirelessly to create a spectacular event that entertains the cheerful crowds and provides joy to millions at home watching onThanksgiving Day.  Stretching down a more than two-mile-long route in New York City, the spectacle isalive with gleaming color, music and smiles. 

Featuring Macy’s signature giant character balloons, fantasy floats, marching bands, clowns, celebrity and large group performances,and the one-and-only Santa Claus, the annual spectacle continues to bring families together to create cherished holiday memories. 

For more than 90 years, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has marked the official start of the holiday season. With more than 50 million viewers nationwide on television and online, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a national icon that has grown into a world-famous holiday event. 

Photos by Lynette Haaland