Simplified: The Lincoln High School Marching Band will perform in the 2024 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. It's the fourth time LHS has marched in the parade in its band history.

Why it matters

  • It's the opportunity of a lifetime for performers in the Lincoln Patriot Marching Band, Director Daniel Carlson said. Carlson himself marched in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade in the 1980s, and he said he's excited to return.
  • Lincoln's marching band is well-known in the Sioux Falls area, and the program has grown to involve more than 200 students. The band has won numerous awards over the years, and broken records in the region for its performance at competitions.
  • The marching band was selected as one of more than 100 applicants nationwide. Only six were high school bands, and Lincoln High was the only band selected from a school that's been represented in the parade before, according to Wesley Whatley, creative producer for the Macy's parade.
"There's a history here of excellence," Whatley told band members during a surprise announcement Tuesday night. "There is something very, very special happening here."

Tell me more

It's been 15 years since the Lincoln band last performed in the parade. Other performances were in 1994, 2000 and 2008.

  • Whatley emphasized the significance of the band's legacy and how that was part of the reason they were again selected to perform.
"There is no bigger stage in the world," Carlson said of the parade after formally accepting the invitation for LHS to participate.  

Superintendent Jane Stavem also showed up to congratulate students Tuesday night.

"Our goal is to be the best school district in the nation," she said, "and I think we've arrived here at the Lincoln High School band."

What happens next?

The band will spend the next year and a half fundraising and preparing for the performance.

  • It's going to cost a lot of money to get there, Carlson said. He's estimating each student will have to come up with more than $1,700.

It's also too soon to say where the band will fall in the order of the parade and what they'll be performing.

How can I help support the band?

If you want to help fund the band's trip to NYC, you can do so in a couple of ways:

  • This link here,
  • Or mail a check to the high school care of band Director Daniel Carlson. That address is 2900 S. Cliff Ave., Sioux Falls, S.D., 57105.