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Marching Band and Color Guard Honor Veterans Throughout Memorial Day Weekend

 Valley Echo Banner Kayla Leonard '20

7 June 2019

Memorial Day Parade; photo credit: Mr. DeLuccia On Friday, May 24, the Marching Band performed in a concert at Wilmore Road Park to kick off Memorial Day Weekend. The following day, the band, joined by the Color Guard, honored and remembered US veterans in the annual Memorial Day Parade, hosted by The American Legion Singac Post 108 & The Township of Little Falls.

The Memorial Day Parade is an event the Marching Band and Color Guard participates in annually, though the host town rotates amongst the triboro area. Last year, PV attended the Totowa Memorial Day Parade. This year, the band performed in Little Falls. And next year, they will make an appearance in the Woodland Park parade.

The Friday concert began at 6pm and the band, featuring students from grade 7-12, played a variety of hits for twenty minutes. Other performers included Steve Pullara, DJ Mike Penkoski, and Smoked Rose. Various food trucks provided meals and refreshments throughout the night, as local clubs promoted their organizations, sold items and carried out giveaways. Music Teacher and Marching Band Director Mr. Michael DeLuccia also spoke to the audience about the Marching Band program.


At 10am the next morning, Marching Band and Color Guard gathered at Clarence Avenue and marched down Main Street, playing their instruments and performing routines for the crowds to enjoy. Led by DeLuccia, the band performed three pieces: Star Wars, Soul Man, and Valley Valley. Memorial Day Parade; photo credit: Mr. DeLuccia

“I thought [the band] actually did a very nice job this year,” said DeLuccia. “It was a good sized crowd this year and I felt the parade itself overall was very well organized.”

The Color Guard performed a routine done annually at the parade. Multiple practices were held beforehand so that new members could learn the choreography, as well as marching techniques for staying in sync throughout the performance.

"I think we all did an amazing job staying together and really performing our hearts out," said Color Guard Captain Jessica Gaita '19. 

The parade is a great opportunity for the public to see what is provided in the Marching Band/Color Guard program, as well as reinforce a sense of tradition for those who have long been members of the community. Furthermore, it brings out great support for the hardworking students.

“[The parade] is really important because the public gets to see what we have in our program,” said DeLuccia. “We do have a smaller Marching Band right now, but I think it’s good for the public to see that as well because I’m hoping they’ll give more support.”

The parade concluded at Wilmore Road Park, where a memorial service took place to honor the heroes who have died in service.

"The feeling of unity was overwhelming as all the sports teams, clubs, and police marched together to join the town of Little Falls in the memorial service," said Pit Captain Daniela Gencarelli '20. "I'm glad I joined the members of my town for a peaceful rememberance of the fallen who died fighting for our freedom."