The country’s largest Flag Day parade kicks off Saturday in Appleton.
A special group of musicians have traveled more than 1,100 miles to northeast Wisconsin to perform after the parade and Thursday the public got a taste of what to expect Saturday.
The 2nd Marine Division Band was invited to play for the upcoming Flag Day parade.
They’re based in Camp Lejune in North Carolina.
Much like the Marines’ motto, semper fi, or always faithful, these are not just military men, but dedicated performers.
“We train with a rifle every year, but we’re also musicians, we’re very passionate about music and using music as a universal communication tool to share what the Marine Corps message is with the people,” says staff sergeant Taylor Massey.
The sounds of a Marine Corp playing modern songs, radio hits, donned in their dress blues is not a sight you see every day, let alone hearing songs you can jam to.
“It arouses patriotism because when people don’t really get to see servicemembers on a regular basis.” says marine division band member Emily Campbell. “I doubt that any of these people really get to see service people, especially in their blue uniform, so them getting to see it really arouses the patriotism.”
And this week presents no better time to evoke that patriotism.
“It could never be more relevant or significant to have the Marine Corps here to be part of the celebrations happening this week,” says Massey. “Especially since it’s the day when people are turning their minds back to remember one of the most important moments of sacrifice in our nation’s history.”
Whether it’s traditional military music or Amy Winehouse, they want their message to remain the same.
“No matter what happens, we will always be America’s force of readiness,” says Massey.
Following the parade Saturday the 2nd Division Marine band will perform at the Appleton American Legion on West College Avenue.
You can find parking and parade route information here: https://www.wearegreenbay.com/news/local-news/parking-and-parade-route-information-for-appleton-s-flag-day-parade/2055223026.