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KU cancels Band Day parade because of early football game kickoff


Well, I guess I won't bring my big fuzzy drum major hat downtown after all.

I had heard through the grapevine and now have confirmed that Kansas University has decided to cancel its traditional Band Day parade through downtown Lawrence. It was scheduled for Sept. 21.

Leslie O'Neil, office manager for the KU Band office, confirmed that the parade has been cancelled due to logistical problems created by KU's 11 a.m. kickoff for its game against Louisiana Tech. O'Neil stressed the halftime performance of area bands is still scheduled to continue.

But I'm sure some people will be bummed that the parade won't take place. In past years, it has seemed to draw a large crowd to downtown. But O'Neil said the early kickoff time made it difficult for the parade to happen. That's because bands need to arrive at the stadium before the parade to practice their halftime routines. NCAA regulations require that the field be available to the football teams several hours before kickoff time. So, an 11 a.m. kickoff makes it tough for bands to have enough time to practice the routine and assemble for a pre-game parade.

I believe the parade has been cancelled at least once before because of a kickoff time conflict, but I don't remember what year it was.

I just remember my hat got a lot of funny looks that year.


gsxr600 4 years, 3 months ago

Well that just disappointed a whole lot of people.

tomatogrower 4 years, 3 months ago

Really? Stupid tv schedules. I love this parade. Actually I love all our parades. It's one reason I live in Lawrence.

rtwngr 4 years, 3 months ago

How about that, tomatogrower, we agree on something. Isn't life grand?

thepianoman 4 years, 3 months ago

Such a shame. This is what I look forward to each year.

grandnanny 4 years, 3 months ago

I think the parade was cancelled last year but maybe it was the year before. I expect that Band Day is about to disappear altogether because TV controls sports these days. Band days used to be much later in the year after kids had time to practice together and it was not so hot. Now it is so early most bands haven't even practiced but a few weeks - and kids collapse from the heat every year.

mom_of_three 4 years, 3 months ago

Band day was held in 2010 and 2011. Not sure about last year. But I remember some warm Band days when I participated as a high school kid... it was early in September, and one year, we wore our "summer" uniform - shorts!

Garth Atchison 4 years, 3 months ago

Made my day. One less headache on a busy Saturday downtown.

hujiko 4 years, 3 months ago

Except KU doesn't get a word in on when to set the game time, that's up to whatever network is carrying the game. Take it up with them instead. Trust me, decisions like this do not come lightly.

You could also wait just two more weeks and experience the Homecoming parade return to Downtown.

EDIT: In response to a now disappeared post.

Laundrytime 4 years, 3 months ago

If there was a desire for this to happen they would of practiced at another location - 2 high schools, HINU stadium, and possibly the KU Band practice field up by the Lied Center just to name a few.

hujiko 4 years, 3 months ago

They cancelled for logistical reasons. Splitting up a rehearsal all over town and in places without the facilities to accommodate several thousand band kids would not be helping the situation. Like I mentioned above, decisions like this do not come easily and without deep consideration of all feasible options. It is still very unfortunate, and I hope for tradition's sake it is able to pick back up next year.

Randall Uhrich 4 years, 3 months ago

That sucks. Half the thrill of Band Day for all of those high school kids is marching in the parade. For me, it was the most memorable part of coming to a college town for Band Day.

patkindle 4 years, 3 months ago

we ku gets the pot full of money from the tv network, they really don't care what you folks think about band day, sorry

richfree 4 years, 3 months ago

Money Talks... hell with tradition...

Fred Vance 4 years, 3 months ago

TV $$$ trumps common sense... like selling your soul to the devil.

Fred Vance 4 years, 3 months ago

TV $$ trumps common sense.... like selling your soul to the devil.

Wayne Cook 4 years, 3 months ago

Who cares about your hat. That is not what the lead paragraph should be about. Winston Churchill said "If you have an important point to make, don’t try to be subtle or clever."

Terri Ferguson 4 years, 3 months ago

This is very sad news. As a child growing up here in Lawrence, I have the fondest memories of going downtown EARLY in the mornings with my mom in anticipation of the big band parade. We would always start our morning off with coffee for her, and Hot chocolate and donuts for me from DayLite Donuts on Mass. I am disappointed to not be able to take my grand children to this event this year. Can't we have it on a different weekend, rather than just cancel all together??

stevieboy 4 years, 3 months ago

Surely the band could practice at another time?

Larry 4 years, 3 months ago

Parade is the best part. The heck with the half time show. Let the kids march down Mass St then attend the game as spectators. The parade is much more fun than walking onto the field and playing three or four songs at a drastically slower tempo than intended. Guessing both fans and HS band students would choose the parade over the 1/2 time show. I wonder how the HS band directors feel about this. Some travel along way to simply walk 50 steps onto a field.

Larry 4 years, 3 months ago

How about changing band day to Oct 5 vs Texas Tech?

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