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Hampton University’s Marching Force performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Thursday. This year marks the 95th march of the parade, which featured Macy’s signature mix of giant character helium balloons, fantastic floats, incredible marching bands, jubilant performance groups, whimsical clowns, music stars, and the one-and-only Santa Claus.

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Each year, the Macy’s Parade Band Committee looks for bands that have the stage presence, as well as musical and marching abilities, to captivate millions of spectators. Hampton was selected from more than 100 applicants as one of nine selected bands to march in the 94th edition of the annual holiday spectacle. Unfortunately, that invitation was deferred to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In a normal year, preparing a band for the Macy’s Parade is stressful and daunting. To do so in the midst of a global pandemic—the challenge is insurmountable. It is a testament to the hard work of our students and staff, through the support of our fellow faculty and administrators under Dr. Harvey’s unwavering leadership and commitment to excellence,” said Hampton University Director of Bands, Dr. Thomas Jones.

Pepsi Stronger Together – the brand’s series of grassroots initiatives bringing tailored support to communities across the country – helped to bring Hampton University to NYC to perform in the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Through a $100,000 donation, Pepsi Stronger Together provided transportation to and from NYC and practice uniforms for the band.

“I’m so excited Pepsi Stronger Together was able to help make this journey happen for the incredibly talented Hampton Marching Force as they head to perform at this iconic stage,” said Derek Lewis, president, South Division, PepsiCo Beverages North America (PBNA). “From our ‘She Got Now’ internship program to other HBCU-specific donations, and as a Hampton alum myself, I’m so proud to see another piece of PepsiCo’s commitment to supporting HBCUs come to life.”


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