Marching band announces 2019 trip to London

The Howlin’ Husky Marching Band recently was selected to participate in the London New Year’s Day Parade in London, England.


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On New Year’s Day next year, the marching band will be performing in the 2019 New Year’s Day Parade in London, England.

Ethan Knauth, Writer

The Howlin’ Husky Marching Band will travel to London from Dec. 27 – Jan. 3 to play in the 2019 New Year’s Day Parade in London, England. Contrary to years past, Principal Amy Murphy said the district is choosing not to sponsor the marching band because of an agreement made last year.

“Last year, the district made the decision that there would not be any international travel done by the district,” Murphy said. “If groups wanted to travel internationally they could, but it would be independent of the district.”

Despite the district not sponsoring the trip, Band Director Adam Lundine said he is not worried. He believes that with or without the sponsorship, the trip will go on as planned.

“We are essentially doing the same thing we have done in the past, except the district won’t be involved in any of the contractual stuff,” Lundine said.

According to Murphy, the reasons behind the district’s unwillingness to sponsor international travel are based purely on the students’ well-being and ability to attain an equal opportunity.

“Starting to look at some of the things that are happening in the world, I don’t think we wanted to make the decision that we were going to send kids there [with] confidence that we could keep them safe,” Murphy said. “The other part of it being the cost, it’s really expensive.”

Lundine said that the marching band will hold fundraisers so students can have the opportunity to raise money for the trip, which costs $3400 per person. Lundine said that any liability in case of injury would be on the travel agency, as has always been the case with trips sponsored the district. 

“I’m so excited about this opportunity. I think it’s an experience that some students will not get the opportunity to travel internationally,” Lundine said. “We’ll be providing them with an educational and historical experience that they maybe wouldn’t have otherwise.”

Along with marching in the parade, band members will also get to explore the city of London, which includes various castle tours and a visit to Oxford University.

The trip to London will be the first international trip for the marching band since 2015 when the band traveled to Spain. This is the second time the marching band has participated in the New Year’s Day Parade in London, previously participating in the parade in 2009.

The trip to London is also the first time the district will not be sponsoring the marching band as they travel internationally. Without the sponsorship the band will have to rent uniforms and instruments back from the school.

Still, according to Lundine, the marching band’s acceptance into the New Year’s Day Parade is a testament to the hard work of the students.

“It shows that we are an established program that can provide a good product, and it is something that their company is looking for,” Lundine said.

Lundine, who was able to march in the New Year’s Day Parade when he was in high school at Shawnee Mission West, is eager to share his previous experiences with his students.

“The experience of marching in the London New Year’s Day Parade, which is something I did as a high school student, is something that I know I’ll remember for the rest of my life.” Lundine said, “I look forward to sharing that experience with my students.”