On November 20, 2018, the West Johnston High School band traveled to Illinois to perform in the Uncle Dan's Thanksgiving Day Parade through historic downtown Chicago, realizing a dream their director, Lucas Meade, had for his students. Seventy-six band members made the journey by invitation from the World Strides Travel Group and braved 30-degree wind chills to march one extraordinary mile through the windy city, playing a cut from "Saturday in the Park" (by Chicago), a piece the band performed as part of their fall competition. Mr. Meade shared this about the occasion: "The most magical moment of the day was walking alongside the band with skyscrapers on either side and thousands of people cheering, and realizing that I had made this special moment a reality for the kids. Their faces expressed great joy over simply creating live music for a crowd of people." The band students also spent three days exploring Chicago, including taking a trolley tour, visiting Soldier Field and the Museum of Science and Industry, and shopping the Magnificent Mile on Black Friday. "The entire trip was amazing," says Mr. Meade. "It was a privilege to be able to provide such an incredible experience to our kids, many of whom have never left the state before. Thankfully, we escaped the snow storm that arrived a few days after the parade, and we're back all home to share the memory."