Marching Illini head to Ireland

Marching Illini head to Ireland

For the first time in six years, the University of Illinois Marching Illini will participate in a St. Patrick's Day parade across the pond, and the group's director said the band will have a coveted position in that parade.

Director of the Marching Illini Barry Houser said a group of 325 students, parents and alumni will travel to Ireland on Thursday to participate in the official St. Patrick's Day parade in Dublin on Monday for the first time since 2008.  Houser said of that group, about 280 are current members of the Marching Illini, and he says the band is excited about where it has been placed in the parade.

Houser added that the scheduling for the trip has gotten really interesting in the last few days.

Houser says Louisiana State University is the only other college band from the United States performing in the parade in Dublin, along with several high school bands.  He said this will be the seventh time the Marching Illini will perform in St. Patrick's Day parade in Ireland, with the first time occurring in 1992.

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Sid Saltfork wrote on March 12, 2014 at 5:03 pm

How thrilling...  Spring Break with your parents clawing the pubs of Dublin.  Dubliners love wealthy Americans celebrating St. Patrick's Day.  There are a few Canadians; but the French, Germans, and other europeans never show up.  Still marching in Dublin is better than marching in Belfast.