GREENDALE — After months of practice and anticipation, the Greendale Marching Band left for Pasadena, California Friday morning to perform in the Rose Parade. Greendale High School is one of 20 bands around the country heading West to be part of the big event.
"Memorizing the music, making sure the playwork looks good and be prepared to be in front of 40 million people on national TV," said Tom Reifenberg.
The Band Director said this trip has been a long time coming.
"We found out about this 14 months ago so there's been a lot of fundraising. It costs $2,000 per person to get out there so the community really came together," said Reifenberg.
More than 200 Greendale students will march on New Year's Day.
"The parade is 5.5 miles long so a lot of the preparation involved just building the endurance to march 5.5 miles, which is equivalent to Greendale High School to the airport. So it's a long trek for the kids," said Reifenberg.
The experience has been a journey for the kids, but it's a moment the entire community is looking forward to.
"Everywhere you go you're wearing your Greendale things and Rose gear and everyone is very excited about it," said Reifenberg.
In addition to performing, the band has a lengthy itinerary including a tour of Hollywood, a visit to the Santa Monica Pier and some time at Universal Studios.
The Rose Parade is New Year's morning, which is next Wednesday. You can watch the parade on TODAY's TMJ4.
The Wisconsin Badgers will play in the Rose Bowl game later in the day. Kick-off is set for 4:00 pm.