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West Palm Beach marching band to participate in FAMU parade

Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 8:31 PM EDT
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A group of West Palm Beach students will be traveling Thursday to participate in Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University’s homecoming parade this weekend.

At least 40 members from Faith’s Place marching band, that includes kids from elementary school through high school, will be participating in Florida A&M University’s legendary homecoming festivities.

Rehearsals started inside the center on Wednesday to fine-tune some of the music that Faith’s Place marching band will be performing at FAMU.

Faith Mays plays the saxophone in the band.

“It fills me up with so with so much excitement to hear like college bands play the song that we play,” she said.

Last year’s festivities were canceled due to COVID-19. Once this year’s homecoming plans were announced, Faith’s Place director said it was a must to take their students this year.

“Exposure, exposure,” said Nobel Lockhart-Mays. “It means a lot. It changes the trajectory of someone’s life, growing up in this demographic area.”

Norman Bain is the current band director. Bain was one of the first students recruited into Faith’s Place program and band.

“It’s very inspiring for our up-and-coming musicians to be able to see that somebody went through the process and trusted the process and now they’re here,” said Bain. “Here is the result of what continuous discipline, dedication, and determination looks like.”

Bain added that students at the center have an opportunity to grow as a person and have a support system that will guide them to every note along the way.

“There’s a lot of our black and brown children don’t see this side of the arts. They’re used to hearing what’s on the radio. It kind of stops right there," Bain said. "Being able to have a great housing place for fine arts, as well as something that is loud, like, 'Oh my gosh,' it’s catching my eyes and moving their feet. Having a safe place to have those festivities in is really important to this community.”

Scripps Only Content 2021