Pearl City band per­forms at McDon­ald’s Thanks­giv­ing Day Pa­rade

MidWeek Islander (West Oahu) - - Front Page - BY NI­COLE KATO

More than 400,000 peo­ple crowd the streets of down­town Chicago each Thanks­giv­ing for the McDon­ald’s Thanks­giv­ing Day Pa­rade, and this year the Pearl City High School Charger March­ing Band was able to share Hawaii’s aloha spirit among floats and other marchers.

“Our past per­for­mances at other pres­ti­gious pa­rades drove the invitation by the McDon­ald’s Thanks­giv­ing Pa­rade com­mit­tee,” said Pearl City High di­rec­tor of bands Chad Kamei. “They know the band’s his­tory of per­form­ing at other pa­rades, such as the Macy’s Thanks­giv­ing Pa­rade and the Tour­na­ment of Roses Pa­rade.”

The group im­me­di­ately was se­lected to par­tic­i­pate, which Kamei said is a true honor.

“Nor­mally, a se­lec­tion com­mit­tee takes about three months, and we re­ceived the invitation in only a few days,” he added.

Pearl City’s march­ing band spent a lot of time pre­par­ing their pieces ( Hawai­ian War Chant and Mele Ka­liki­maka), but noth­ing could have pre­pared them for the cold tem­per­a­tures in Illi­nois.

“The crowd was five to six peo­ple deep for the en­tire pa­rade route,” Kamei said. “It was so ex­cit­ing for the stu­dents to be per­form­ing for so many peo­ple. Peo­ple were yelling ‘ aloha’ through­out the pa­rade, and a few even stopped me to men­tion how im­pressed they were with the stu­dents be­cause they knew that th­ese stu­dents were not used to march­ing in th­ese cold tem­per­a­tures.”

To add to the al­ready cold tem­per­a­ture, snow fell lightly on the pa­rade route — an added bless­ing for many stu­dents who had never ex­pe­ri­enced snow­fall be­fore.

“I re­ally would like to thank our com­mu­nity, and the par­ents, ad­min­is­tra­tion, fac­ulty and staff at Pearl City High School,” Kamei con­tin­ued. “The stu­dents worked so hard for this event and had a won­der­ful time through­out the trip.

“We re­ally were thank­ful for all of that dur­ing the Thanks­giv­ing Day pa­rade.”

March­ing band stu­dents also were able to visit some of Chicago’s his­tor­i­cal sites, such as the Field Mu­seum of Nat­u­ral His­tory, Mu­seum of Sci­ence and In­dus­try, and Shedd Aquar­ium.

The band brought ‘aloha’ to chilly Chicago. Pho­tos cour­tesy Pearl City High School March­ing Band.

Pearl City High’s Charger March­ing Band per­formed at the McDon­ald’s Thanks­giv­ing Day Pa­rade.

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