2016 IPL 500 Festival Parade Bands

Beech Grove High School – Marching Hornets

Traveling from a suburb of Indianapolis and directed by Cory Wynn, the Beech Grove High School Marching Hornets will bring nearly 125 performers to march in the 2016 IPL 500 Festival Parade. In the past decade, the Marching Hornets placed in the Indianapolis State School Music Association finals a remarkable five times.

Ben Davis High School – Marching Giants

Based out of Indianapolis, The Ben Davis Marching giants are 14 time Indiana State Marching Championship winners. A repeat performer in the 500 Festival Parade, the Marching Giants have also performed for six different US presidents and in such parades at the Tournament of Roses Parade, The Sugar Bowl Parade and Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Castle High School – Castle Marching Knights

The Castle Marching Knights from Castle High School located in Newburgh Indiana (a suburb of Evansville), will join the 2016 500 Festival Parade lineup.  The Marching Knights have also performed at the Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, and Disney Magic Music Days. In the 2005 Bands of America Grand Nationals Competition, Castle ranked 13th in the nation.

James B. Conant High School – Conant Marching Band

The Conant Marching Band will join the parade lineup this year.  James B. Conant High School is located in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, a northwest suburb of Chicago, Illinois.  The Conant Marching Band consists of over 170 freshmen through senior students.  Their traditional marching style along with a compliment of full wind and drumline sections give Conant Band audiences energetic and memorable experiences.

Crestview High School Band – The Big Red Machine

The Big Red Machine from Crestview High School, located in Okaloosa County, Florida is one of the oldest high school bands in the Southeastern United States.  The 280 member band has performed throughout the United States, including performances in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade as well as performances in major cities such as New Orleans, San Antonio, Tampa and Washington, D.C.

Elkhart Memorial High School – Crimson Charger Command

The Elkhart Memorial High School Crimson Charger Command is comprised of 140 members. They represent the city Elkhart, Indiana where many of the instruments used by the bands today were made. The band has performed in the IPL 500 Festival Parade in 2008 and numerous times in Walt Disney World. Band director and Indiana native Kurt Weimer is in his 21st year of teaching and 11th with the Memorial Band.

Indianapolis 500 Gordon Pipers

In May of 1963, the Gordon Pipers became known as the “Gasoline Alley Gordon Pipers”. This was the beginning of many performances by the band that have become a tradition at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Their performances on Opening Day, Qualification Days, the 500 Festival Parade and Race Day have become part of the tradition that is the Indianapolis 500 mile race.

Hampton High School – Hampton High School Marching Band

The Hampton High School Marching Band is from Allison Park, PA, just north of Pittsburgh. Astonishingly, the band represents over 20% of the high school population. Having also performed in 2008 and 2012, this is the band’s third appearance in the IPL 500 Festival Parade. Chad Himmler has been the band director at Hampton High School for 12 years.

Indiana National Guard – 38th Infantry Division Band

Headquartered in Indianapolis, the “Pride of the Division” is the only military band in the state of Indiana. The band performs ceremonies, concerts, and parades in both military and civic capacities throughout the state. Since its formation in 1917, the band has maintained a long and proud history with the 38th Division.

Indianapolis Public Schools – All City Marching Band

The Indianapolis Public Schools All City Marching Band is the premiere musical performance group that represents all nine IPS High School programs. Made up of the elite players and performers from each of the secondary programs, the IPS All City Marching Band has performed in festivals throughout Indiana and events throughout the Midwest.

National Band Association – Indiana All-Star Band

The National Band Association (NBA) Indiana All-Star Marching Band has performed annually in the 500 Festival Parade since 1998. The National Band Association sponsors the band with assistance from Music Travel Consultants. The band is comprised of wind and auxiliary members from bands throughout the state recommended by their respective band directors. The drumline for the band is selected from one of the qualifying schools. All members wear the uniform of their respective hometown bands.

Noblesville High School – Marching Millers

The Noblesville High School’s Marching Millers will perform in the IPL 500 Festival Parade this year.  Noblesville High School is located in the north side suburbs of Indianapolis.  The Marching Millers are a part of the school’s performing arts department. The band, made up of brass, woodwinds and percussion is directed by Eric Thornbury.

Northeastern High School Band – The Marching Knights

The Marching Knights from Northeastern High School are from Fountain City, Indiana. The band has 115 marching members. The Knights participate annually in the Indiana State Fair Band Day and are regular finalist in the Band Day Finals. The Damsel color guard has 24 members and placed 2nd in the Indiana High School Color Guard class AA finals in 2015. The Marching Knight’s last appearance in the 500 Festival Parade was in 1993.

Purdue University – Purdue “All-American” Band

The Purdue “All-American” Band has been the host band of the Indianapolis 500 since 1919. Their claim to fame is their 10-foot tall Big Bass Drum – often referred to as the “World’s Largest Drum”.  Over 179 members will travel to Indianapolis to be in the 2016 IPL 500 Festival Parade, including 159 Instrumentalists, 12 Guard, and 4 Drum Majors.

South Spencer High School – Marching Rebels

As Indiana’s most southern high school, they have accumulated 13 state finals appearances as an Indiana State School of Music Association’s Class D band, five of those appearances the band finished in the top 5 of their class. The Marching Rebels are currently in a streak of consecutive state finals appearances, a streak that hasn’t happened since the 1980’s.

Speedway High School – Speedway 500 Regiment

The Speedway 500 Regiment is the only band allowed to wear the logo of the IMS on their uniforms. Their attire represents the black and white checkered flag with their black and white uniforms with a gold sash to incorporate the school’s colors. They have performed in the 500 Festival Parade every year.

Sumner High School – Spartan Marching Band

The Sumner High School Spartan Marching Band from Sumner, Washington has a long history of excellence, having performed coast-to-coast over the past few years, including performances in the 1998 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade, the 2005 National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C., the 2013 Walt Disney World Thanksgiving Parade of Bands in Orlando, Florida and this year for the 6th time performing at the 4-mile Portland Rose Festival Grand Floral Parade.

Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps

The Troopers are the only competitive World Class drum and bugle corps in the state of Wyoming. The corps, founded in 1957 by Casper contractor Jim Jones, represents Wyoming in numerous performance events during the year and participates in the Drum Corps International tour during the summer months. The Troopers were the first competitive drum corps to participate in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade; they represented the state of Wyoming at the 1993 and 2001 presidential inaugural parades, and have performed in concert before World’s Fair attendees, NATO Defense College delegates and Presidents Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, Bush, Clinton and George W. Bush.