ALBERTVILLE, Ala. -- The Albertville Aggie Band will represent Alabama in 2018 in front of a national audience - for the second time.
Early Friday morning a cacophony of sounds emit from the band room at Albertville High School. It's the sound of more than 200 kids warming up. There's a pep rally in a few minutes, and it's organized rushing to get where each band member needs to be.
Assistant band director Taylor Cash stands in front of the room and counts them off. On cue the entire band - the largest in the area - erupts in the school's fight song.
"Right now, in the high school 9 through 12 we have 223 students," Cash said.
They're used to playing in front of a large audience. During football games, both the home and away stands are keyed into the band's performance, and at the end, there's usually a standing ovation. But, in a few months, the entire band will pack up and leave Alabama, heading to a destination that, proudly, isn't new.
"We are going to Pasadena, California, for the 2018 Rose Parade," Cash said. That's the second time the band has been asked to attend. The first was in 2011.
"It's definitely going to be a chance of a lifetime, and it's going to be a fun trip," Mercedes Childers said. She's a junior and the drum major. "I can't wait," she added.
There are red signs all of the city of Albertville, boldly announcing support for the band. The members are selling them for $10 to raise money for the trip, which will be costly. "It's been a huge fundraiser," Cash said, "We've sold 3,000 of them at this point."
That number shows the community is behind the band all the way as they represent Albertville, Marshall County, and Alabama."It's really a sign of the support of the community, and the hard work of the kids, the dedication, commitment to the band program," Cash added.
"With this band you're going to be able to get those chances to do those things, so I'm very blessed to be a part of Albertville Aggie Band," said Childers.