MASON CITY, Iowa - It is one of the most popular traditions in our area and on Saturday morning, the North Iowa Band Festival kicked-off yet again.
It was the 76th time the streets of Mason City were filled with the sounds of marching bands, so it was only fitting that 76 trombones lead the big Band Festival parade.
Another 18 high school marching bands marched close behind the trombones and more than 120 floats made their way through the parade route.
According to the Mason City Police Department, approximately 30,000 people visited the River City for the event, and with numbers like this, it’s no surprise that Mason City Chamber of Commerce President, Robin Anderson, considered this year another big success.
“It’s such a wonderful celebration of the musical heritage, not just of mason city but all of north Iowa and southern Minnesota,” Anderson says.
Whether folks were walking in the parade, or lining the streets in support of the participants, it was all about keeping true to traditions.
Vicky Ulve of Manly has brought her family to the North Iowa Band Festival for as many years as she can remember and she says it’s a tradition she doesn’t see dying any time soon.
“I think we’ll be here probably every year as we are able too,” she says, so we can enjoy the music and enjoy it with friends and family.”
The morning wasn’t just about a parade for the spectators as all 18 high school marching bands were in competition with one another.
After much deliberation, the official results were announced following the end of the parade in East Park.
Here is a list of this year’s North Iowa Band Festival winners:
1st Place – Clear Lake Middle School
1st Place – Northwood Kensett High School
2nd Place – Rudd-Rockford-Marble Rock High School
1st Place – Lake Mills High School
2nd Place – Osage High School
3rd Place – St. Ansgar High School
1st Place – Forest City High School
2nd Place – Charles City High School
3rd Place – Merrill High School
1st Place – Park Center High School
2nd Place – Osseo High School
However, the festivities don’t end there.
For a complete list of all of the North Iowa Band Festival events going on this weekend in the River City, visit the North Iowa Band Festival’s website.