The Evans High School Marching Band is headed to London to perform in the New Year's Day parade. (WRDW-TV / Dec. 26, 2011)
News 12 at Six O' Clock / Monday, Dec. 26, 2011
EVANS, Ga. -- You could call it the school field trip of a lifetime. Students with the Evans High School band head to London Tuesday to perform and march in the New Year's Day parade.
What a way to ring in the New Year for dozens of students and chaperons, some of whom have never even been on a plane.
The instruments are packed, passports on hand, and luggage is ready to roll.
"I've packed my stuff. Well, sort of," said 12th grader Ariel Greenaway.
Greenaway plays the alto saxophone for the Knights.
11th grader Charles Morgan also plays the saxophone.
"We're being selected out of all the other schools to go to London and that's like an honor," he said.
Greenaway said, "The fact that we're going and I'm going with these guys, it just makes it even awesome-r."
Awesome-r is right. Just as these guys who say they are excited.
10th grader Rebecca Smeak plays the trombone
"I am nervous and excited," she said. "I have never been on a plane before."
Getting to this point didn't come easy.
"We've had to practice every week. When we go down to the football field and we march, and march, and march, and play over, over, and over again," Smeak said.
So, whether it's hitting the right notes on the instrument or with the locals.
"We tried to prepare them for the whole experience. I mean even from flying on the plane to once we get there and how we say things. Usually, though, the Southern kids are always polite anyways," said Band Director Reid Hall.
They're now well-versed on their music, etiquette and history. Of course, we couldn't help but ask, "Have you been practicing your accents?"
"No, not at all. I'm not even going to try anymore because I can't do it justice," Greenaway answered. "So, I'm just going to leave it to the pros, the originals."
Past Evans band members have been invited a total of five times to perform there. This time around, a total of 66 band members are going with about 17 chaperones. They will leave as early as 8:30 a.m. Tuesday on three buses and three planes.