It may not be as big as the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade, but the event being held in Chicago next week is just a hop, skip and jump from Eastern Iowa, and in particular, Mt. Vernon, whose students from the school's marching band will be taking part in the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade.

90 students from Mt. Vernon will be heading to the Windy City to play in the school's third invitation to the parade. Students will head out Tuesday, pending negative COVID-19 test results (which unfortunately is a way of our life now), and will then prepare for the experience of a lifetime. Senior Drum Major Edie Barkalow is an old pro at this. Of the three trips to the parade Mt. Vernon has made, this will be Edie's second but according to KCRG, she is still as excited as ever for herself and her bandmates. No pressure on the newbies, as Edie states,

We’re there to have fun. And yeah, we’re gonna be like marching down and being in the view of 1000s of people, but I don’t think they should be scared by that.

Your best bet to see the parade from here is to make the trip to Chicago yourself or pick up a Roku device, where you can watch on the "VPOD" channel. It's also going to be streamed on the Chicago Thanksgiving Parade Facebook page.

Don't worry, the group is going to be high-tailing it right back to Mt. Vernon in time to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with their families, but the memories made over their couple of days on the big stage will be indelible.

Best of luck to the kids at Mt. Vernon.

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